The Zens Liberty, a Qi wireless charging pad which bears more than a passing resemblance to Apple’s cancelled AirPower charger, is now available to order for January delivery. The Liberty includes 16 overlapping charging coils which allow you to place your devices anywhere on its surface to charge. $139.99 (€139.99) gets you a model with a fabric surface, while the $179.99 (€179.99) edition comes with a glass surface to let you see all the charging coils contained within.
The Zens Liberty doesn’t quite deliver on everything Apple’s AirPower had promised. For one thing, it only lets you wirelessly charge two, rather than three, devices simultaneously on the pad. It also can’t charge an Apple Watch natively — for that you’ll have to plug a $39.99 accessory into its USB-A port. Still, the fact that you can place your devices anywhere on its surface has the potential to make wireless charging a much more reliable experience, as opposed to having to find the exact sweet spot to place your device.
Zens says its charging mat has a total wireless power output of 30W (meaning it can charge two devices at 15W), and supports Apple and Samsung Fast Charge. It also includes a 2.4A USB-A port which you could use to charge a third device. The whole pad is powered over USB-C, and comes with a 60W USB power adapter.
The fact that the Zens Liberty comes with these limitations could explain why a relatively small manufacturer has been able to make good on a concept that Apple struggled with for years. Apple originally announced its AirPower charging mat back in September 2017, but was thought to have struggled with overheating issues that lead to its eventual cancellation.
We’ve yet to try out the Zens Liberty for ourselves, but if the charging mat works as advertised then it could offer a nice compromise for anyone who still hasn’t gotten over the death of AirPower.
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