This Indiegogo campaign for an add-on wireless charging solution seems, at best, to be naive and at worst to be dangerously loose with the truth in its bid to get funding. With the wireless charging format wars all but sorted the introduction of Fli charging adds little to the market except for a slickly done campaign video.
The campaign makes some patently untrue claims about current wireless charging technologies – plenty of Qi charging plates do not require specific orientation to work (it may be the case for all of them, certainly all of mine support any orientation) and wireless fast chargers do exist. It also glosses over the fact that Qi cases are freely available for iPhones and for micro USB devices there are many Qi universal connectors available.
So what is a very expensive proposition comes down to two things. Do you want to tie yourself to a new wireless charging standard without broad manufacturer support, little guarantee of future development and all the risks that crowd funding implies, for a slightly more flexible device placement and potentially faster charging?
The offer isn’t even especially cheap. Aside from the early bird offers, the Fli charger and case, with two USB adapters will retail for $179. On Amazon right now you can pick up an iPhone 6 Qi case from $30 and down, a branded Qi charger from $10 and up; and a pair of micro USB Qi stickers for around $10. All in around $50.
If you go the Qi route you’ve also got the future proofing of an industry standard, parts that can be re-used when you upgrade to devices with built in Qi charging and a wide variety of choice in chargers and charger styles. I mean come on, Ikea is even building this technology into furniture.
The big target for the Fli Charging team is clearly the iPhone user community and if the community is that desperate for wireless charging maybe its time that Apple gave it to them. Otherwise they are left vulnerable to ‘offers’ exactly like this.