Tesla Releases Official Wireless Phone Charger for Model 3

 

The Tesla Model 3 might be the company’s “budget” offering, but it has some of the company’s newest and most advanced features. For example, the Model 3 was the first to get always-on Autopilot assistance. Today, Tesla unveiled a new accessory for the Model 3 — a wireless charger for your phone. It’s a little spendy compared with basic desktop wireless chargers, but not as much as similar OEM car accessories.

The Model 3 wireless charging kit costs $125, and you can purchase it today. Tesla expects it to ship in 2-3 weeks. The charger has space for two phones and should work with any device that supports the Qi wireless charging standard.

Prices on wireless chargers have come down considerably since Apple adopted the standard — you should be able to find a dual-coil charger like this for your desk at home for $20-30 at the most. Even the cheapest Tesla is a high-end vehicle, so it’s not surprising there would be a small premium attached. Although, the price isn’t bad compared with a lot of OEM accessories in cars. For example, Honda makes a wireless charging kit for some of its vehicles, and that hardware will run you over $200.

Tesla’s wireless charger plugs into the center console right below the large touchscreen display. It comes with two USB cables and a snap-on plastic bottom lip. So, installation should be as simple as plugging in a few cables and wedging it into the available space, but it uses both of the in-dash USB ports. By contrast, some wireless charging kits for cars (like the aforementioned Honda option) require partially disassembling the dashboard to install.

Unfortunately, Tesla doesn’t provide charging specs for the device. The base Qi charge rate is 5W, which is much slower than wired charging. Devices like the Pixel 3, newer iPhones, and all recent Samsung flagships support higher wireless charging speeds between 7.5W and 10W. It’s unclear if Tesla’s $125 wireless charger supports any of those faster speeds. The Nomad wireless charger for the Model 3 looks almost exactly the same as Tesla’s, and it does have 7.5W fast charging for iPhones. It’s not any cheaper, though.

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