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Google launches new wireless charging pad for the Nexus 5 and Nexus 7

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Gallery Photo: Nexus 5 hands-on photos
Gallery Photo: Nexus 5 hands-on photos

Google has supported wireless charging on its Nexus devices for some time, and last year's Nexus 4 smartphone launched with a semi-circle "puck" that acted as a dock and charger for the device. This year, the company has gone back to the drawing board with its wireless charger, revamping its design and adding magnets for better stability when placing a device on it.

The new charger is glossy on top, unlike the sticky, dust-collecting rubber finish on last year's model, and is compatible with the new Nexus 5 and this year's Nexus 7. Presumably, it will charge any Qi-compatible device, including last year's Nexus 4, but only devices that have the magnets built in to them (the Nexus 5 and Nexus 7) will be able to actually stick to the charger. The charger is square, and is wider on top than on the bottom, forming an upside down trapezoidal shape.

It's not clear how the magnets will affect the Nexus 5's compass and gyroscope — that's usually the concern with putting magnets in wireless charging docks. The last time we saw this technique used was on the TouchStone docks developed by Palm for its Pre and other webOS smartphones and tablets.

Google says that the wireless charger will be available for purchase from the Google Play Store today, but it has not yet revealed any pricing information. We'll update this post with more details as we have them.