Palm's Touchstone dock immediately came to mind when we first saw LG's Nexus 4 Wireless Charger last fall (now available for $60 in the Play Store). Both devices are circular, with a micro-USB port in back and a slanted front surface on which to rest the phone. That's where the similarities end -- while the Touchstone is cylindrical and uses a proprietary wireless charging system, the Nexus 4 Wireless Charger is larger, spherical and Qi-compatible. Another major difference is that Palm's dock uses magnets to line up and secure the handset, and LG's accessory relies solely on the friction between a rubber ring and the glass back of Google's flagship phone. Design-wise the Nexus 4 Wireless Charger looks similar to a smaller Nexus Q cut in half, down to the matching recessed square connector cutout.
Gallery: Nexus 4 Wireless Charger hands-on
In the box you'll find a 5V 1.8A AC adapter (vs. 1.2A for the one supplied with the Nexus 4) along with a micro-USB cable (longer than the one provided with the handset). The manual warns to "use only the power adapter and micro-USB cable that come with your Nexus 4 Wireless Charger", but we didn't have any trouble with other USB power sources beyond longer charging times. We tested the dock with the Nexus 4, Droid DNA, Lumia 920 and Lumia 822 (with the optional Wireless Charging Cover) -- basically, LG's accessory provides the same experience as Nokia's Wireless Charging Plate ($50), which is also Qi-compatible. The $10 difference buys you a matching design and a spare USB power adapter and micro-USB cable (Nokia's plate comes with a proprietary AC adapter). It takes about 4 hours to fully charge Google's flagship phone using wireless power -- check out the gallery above for some action shots.