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Is it a robot head? No, just the Google Nexus 4 wireless charger.

Google rolls out a new wireless charger for its Nexus 4 handset. 

By Matthew Shaer / February 11, 2013

The new Google Nexus wireless charger.

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Google today unveiled the Nexus 4 Wireless Charger, an oddly shaped half-orb powered by Qi induction technology

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The Nexus 4 Wireless Charger is a weird beast. For one, it's called the Nexus 4 Wireless Charger, which is the blandest name this side of the BlackBerry 9350. For another, it looks like a severed robot head or a particularly-ripe, bisected plum. (Google, for the record, calls it "elegant.") Slap your Nexus 4 down on the charger, and within four hours, your device will be at full battery life. 

According to TechCrunch, there's a "dock mode... which displays photos, Currents articles and other info, including the battery charge level." The charger is available for pre-order now; Google estimates it should ship in less than a week. 

We have to admit, we admire the simplicity of the device: No more frayed lines and connectors. No more tangles and knots of white and black cable that accumulate at the bottom of our backpack. 

But is wireless charging – however cool it might be – really worth the $59.99 sticker price? Jessica Dolcourt of CNET isn't so sure. 

"I personally think this is a hefty sticker price for an add-on that's long been underscored as part of the Nexus 4's key selling points," she writes. "Even so, Google's charge is in keeping with the accessories business. Nokia wireless charging cases for phones like the Lumia 820 cost around $20 (it's built into the Lumia 920), and you'll have to fork over between $50 (eBay) and $100 for the actual charging plate." 

The Nexus 4, which was released last fall, has received generally strong marks from critics, who have praised the speed of the software and the design of the device itself. 

"The Nexus 4 offers not only astonishing power from its quad-core chip, but an excellent screen and exciting updates to the Android operating system," concluded the team at CNET UK. "Most importantly, it comes with a price tag at least half that of its technical rivals It's not only the best phone to get if you're on a budget, it's one of, if not the best Android phone to get, regardless of how much money you have to splash around." 

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