Wireless Charging Explained

If you want to use wireless charging but need a case with wallet features, we recommend a folio-style wallet case or a removable, magnetic wallet like Apple’s iPhone Leather Wallet instead. The PowerWave Base Pad is a rounded rectangle measuring 6 inches long, 3 inches wide, and about half an inch thick. It’s grippy enough on top to hold a bare phone in place, but it’s not tacky, and the same rubber material on the bottom holds the charger itself in place. This means you’re not only paying less for the whole package, but you also don’t have to worry about making two separate purchases or potentially forgetting to buy the plug. Belkin’s plastic stand has a footprint of almost 4 by 4 inches, with rubber strips on the underside that provide grip. It stands about 5 inches tall and leans back 20 degrees, allowing you to easily view the phone’s screen . Whether you get the stand in black or white, it’s pretty plain looking, and that’s a good thing because in most settings it won’t stand out as an obvious tech gadget. This charger offers easy magnetic alignment and is as fast as any other non-Apple-branded charger we’ve tested, but it’s best suited for iPhone 12 models.

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Aimed primarily at those heavily invested in the Apple ecosystem, the STM ChargeTree looks to be your one-stop-shop for wirelessly topping up your devices. As a pad, you can also use it to charge a wireless earbud case, such as the one with Apple’s AirPods. Moshi uses a ferrite sheet that offers speedy and efficient charging. It supports both Apple (7.5W) and Samsung fast-charging (WPC Qi-EPP spec). Other charging stands often have a fixed charging coil, and so are more rigid in where a phone must be placed. Buy this charger if you have an iPhone 12 series smartphone and you like the sound of magnetic charging, but you’re prepared to trade some charging speed for the lower price. Choose between 128- or 256GB memory that will allow you to back up your photos and videos at the same time as charging your phone wirelessly. Of course, if you don’t own at least two of those Apple devices, this Aukey solution becomes less attractive – though it does work with all Qi-compatible devices, not only those produced by Apple.

China’s largest wireless charger factory

On iPhones it supports the 7.5W charging speed, and up to 10W fast-charging on other compatible phones. The power coils inside cover the entire back of the stand, so we had no trouble charging our iPhones in either portrait or landscape orientation. A little cooling fan blows air out a vent in the rear to keep the charge coils cool, which keeps the charge rate from slowing down. If it’s especially quiet and you put your ear up next to it, you can hear the gentle whirring sound. It supports Apple’s 7.5W charging rate and I successfully charged phones with average-sized cases on them. Where the previous model retailed for an extravagant $70, the new one tops out at $50. That’s still more than we’d like to pay for a basic plastic wireless charger, but it’s a lot more reasonable. It’s a simple slab that wirelessly charges your iPhone or Android phone (up to 7.5W on iPhones, or 10W on compatible Android phones).

For the full experience, you’ll need to use an 18W charging brick – anything less and your devices will take a while to charge up. It has a hard-wired 1.2m USB-C cable, and you’ll need to pair this with an 18W wall charger to get the maximum charging speed from the Aukey. MagSafe-compatible but not ‘Made for MagSafe’, this magnetic charger from Aukey is more affordable than many wireless pads designed for iPhone 12. This neat wireless charger adds back-up functionality thanks to built-in flash memory. Aukey claims its Wireless Charging Station is fully compatible with cases up to 3mm thick, and can deliver up to 10W charging speed (7.5W for iPhones, 5W for earbuds). A 1.2m cable is included, and can be tucked away under a removable bottom panel when not in use, but you will need to add a wall charger. These days you can also find power banks that offer wireless charging. You’ll find these models in our separate round-up of the best power banks. By far the most common wireless charging standard is Qi (pronounced ‘Chee’). Pretty much all gadgets that support wireless charging support Qi, but at varying speeds.

A perfect bedside companion, the Nomad Base Station Apple Watch Edition features a sturdy aluminum base with a leather charging pad that discretely hides a trio of 10W wireless charging coils. A dock with an Apple Watch magnetic charger is perched above the pad. Two LED charging indicators sit on the side, along with an ambient light sensor that dims the LEDs when you turn off the lights. On the back you’ll find a 7.5W USB-A port and a 18W USB-C port to quickly charge your iPad and other large electronics. Mophie’s 3-in-1 Wireless Charging Pad simultaneously charges all of your compatible Apple devices in one spot without cable clutter. The oblong pad features a 7.5W charging coil for your iPhone and a recessed area for charging AirPods. A horizontal charging connector for the Apple Watch sits above the pad; put your watch in Nightstand mode and you have a good replacement for a bedside clock.

Similarly, the placement of the Apple Watch charger conveniently allows you to use the watch as an alarm clock. While there are a lot of wireless charging pads out there, not all of them will work with the AirPods Pro. But the ones we’ve picked out here will work just fine, making them the best AirPods Pro wireless chargers available. Some of them work with multiple devices too, so if you want convenience, they have you covered. No other stand-style charger we tested for this guide charges iPhone or Android devices faster, and the WPC has certified that this model meets industry safety standards. Its design is basic and won’t look out of place in most settings, whether it’s stationed on your desk or next to your bed.

Light-sensitive sleepers might not love that light in their bedroom. The charger’s glossy surface collects more fingerprints than a detective. If that’s the kind of thing that bothers you, this model may not be the right pick for you. Both the Logitech Powered 3-in-1 Dock and the Belkin Boost Charge 3-in-1 Wireless Charger, our former top pick, are better options in that case. After testing Belkin’s Boost Charge Pro 3-in-1 Wireless Charger with MagSafe, we’ve made it our new pick for iPhone 12 owners. We’ve also added ESR’s HaloLock 2-in-1 charger to the Competition.

The hinges let you fold the Unravel flat to use all three pads, switch it into a triangle shape, or fold it up to use a single pad. In the triangle configuration, a pop-out stand can prop your phone in landscape to watch a movie and have it charge at the same time. With multiple-device support and the fold-up design, the Unravel is the perfect charging solution for trips. As long the device supports Qi wireless charging, Unravel can charge it. We tested it with the Samsung Galaxy S10, Apple iPhone 8, and Google Pixel 4, and it had no trouble charging all three. Some wireless chargers are faster than others, with modern higher-powered chargers capable of fully charging a large battery smartphone in around two hours. They’re typically rated by wattage, with 5W and 10W chargers common, or by output amperage, with 1A at 5V wireless chargers comparable to a standard 1A USB cable charger such as that that comes with the iPhone 7. The Belkin Boost Up Wireless Charging Stand is one of the best wireless chargers for a number of reasons.