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It’s 2022: you listen to music wirelessly, you stream content wirelessly — there’s no reason you should have to charge your devices by plugging them in anymore. Wireless chargers are ideal for bedroom nightstands, so you can wake up to a fully charged device, or your work desk to de-clutter your office space. Plus, it’s convenient to just set your smartphone down on a wireless charging pad and have it charge without fumbling for a cable.
A wireless charging pad is also convenient for a household where there are multiple Android and Apple devices floating around. Instead of searching for the right cable or plug, everybody can live peacefully and charge their device on the same pad.
Once a bit of a novelty, Qi, or wireless chargers can now be found in most households that have a smart phone. Previous generations of Qi chargers were slow and honestly more of a novelty than an effective charging solution. But with advances in charging technology, improvements and batteries, and a much wider consumer acceptance for moving away from chords, Qi wireless chargers are gaining new popularity.
What is Qi wireless charging?
Before we get too far some folks out there may be new to this technology. So what is Qi wireless charging? This is a technology which allows electricity to flow into the phone’s battery without using any cables. Instead the battery absorbs power, usually through its back, when its placed on a special charging pad, which is itself plugged into some kind of power. Sometimes, while convenient, Qi wireless charging can be slower than using a cable.
Fun fact: Qi is a worldwide standard for wireless charging, and the name comes from the Chinese word for ”vital energy” or an intangible stream of power. The philosophy behind Qi is that any and every devices carrying the Qi logo should be compatible with all Qi chargers.
How to choose a Qi wireless charger?
There are a few key factors to be on the lookout for when shopping for a Qi wireless charger. While looks and size will factor in for each individual buyer, do you want to make sure the device is also powerful enough to charge your device effectively and quickly.
Wattage — The maximum compatible wattage, and charging speed is different depending on the device you have. As just one example, the Apple iPhone 13 will charge at 15 watts if your Qi pad is labelled as “Made for MagSafe” but if it’s not, the best you’ll get from the pad is about 7.5 watts. Googel’s Pixel 6 phone by comparison will charge at around 21-23 watts, but again, only with the Pixel Stand charger. It pays to either buy a charger designed for your phone, or to double check your particular phone’s compatibility with Qi charging.
Compatibility with phone — Going a little further than what we noted above, you’ll want to make sure any Qi wireless charger you buy is going to be compatible with your particular phone. While it’s definitely possible to pick up Qi charging pads for under $10, after a while they may quit working with your phone. Double check to ensure you’re getting something that will work not just now but into the future.
Included accessories & cable compatibility — The aftermarket charging arena is crowded with options… But it’s also a lot like the wild west. Every manufacturer and supplier seems to offer something different. While all Qi chargers will come with the charging pad itself, some include a cable, but many do not include an AC adapter or wall plug. There are also many different options when it comes to those cables; check to make sure if they are USB, USB-C, lightning, or micro USB. The last thing you want is to buy a charger and have it show up at your house with no way to connect it to anything to give it actual power.
How many devices will it charge — Depending on how many devices you have, it may be very convenient for you to charge them all at once. Conversely, you may prefer a dedicated solution for your smart phone only, or on your bedside for your Apple Watch, for example. There are a multitude of options when it comes to Qi wireless charging devices; you can find single ability devices, or larger charging pads and mats that can support two, three, or more devices.
Functionality – We looked for wireless charging pads that have cool features to make the wireless charging experience better and more helpful. For instance, MagSafe chargers magnetically align with your phone for a simple charging process, and the Anker Wireless Powerwave has a helpful light to let you know when your phone is successfully charging.
Unique Style – Admittedly, not all charging pads are stylish (we’re looking at you MagSafe), but wireless charging pads like Nomad, Kerf and TOZO all bring a unique, stylish element that makes your pad not only useful but an attractive gadget for your nightstand or desk.
Special Features – The best wireless charging pads also have one or two special features that set them apart from your standard wireless chargers. For instance, the Courant Catch 3 packs multiple charging coils plus a catch-all tray for your keys and wallet. The Nomad Base Station also offers the ability to charge multiple devices, and it has an extremely stylish design.
At Home or on the Go — Another consideration we looked at is whether some of these Qi charging pads can be used in the wild. While a leather wrapped tray is great for the bedroom at home, what about the office, or while commuting, traveling or if you need juice while out on a hike? For that reason we’re breaking out a section on chargers made to move.
Below are our recommendations for the best wireless charging pad for sale in 2022.
1. Courant Catch 3 Accessory Tray
You’ll be hard-pressed to find a wireless charging pad as elegant as the Courant Catch 3. This tray not only wirelessly charges your smartphone but also keeps all of your daily accessories like sunglasses, wallets and jewelry organized. It looks great on your nightstand or right at the entryway of your home. It’s pricey, but man, it sure is stylish.
There is one drawback, which is limited compatibility with MagSafe charging. If that’s not a concern, then this is our top pick for the best wireless charging pad. If you’re giving this as a gift, you can also have the leather exterior monogrammed.
This charger is loaded with style, featuring a premium Italian leather surface and a high-grade matte aluminum alloy underneath. It’s capable of charging phones as well as Qi-compatible headphones, plus it’s got a built in USB plug so you can connect a cable and charge up a tablet or your Apple Watch using the wired charging cable it came with too, or connect another phone. Courant says the “triple coil design” allows for quicker charging. Despite all that it can only handle one device on the Qi pad at a time.
While this is definitely the largest Qi charging pad I tested, it is also the one that blends best into my space, looking nothing like a techie charging device.
2. Moft Smart Desk Mat
What if your desk mat could also wirelessly charge all of your devices? And what if that desk mat also featured built-in accessories like tablet and phone holders? This innovative gadget might sound like fiction, but Moft — the company behind those origami-like device stands — has built a wireless charging pad like no other. Moft sent SPY this charging mat for review, and we’ve been very impressed with the functionality. It also has a handsome design that’s perfect for the office.
3. Nomad Base Station Walnut Edition
Three charging coils are expertly placed inside of a cushioned surface to provide speedy 10W wireless charging for two devices. It also has a USB-A port on the side to charge another device (at 7.5W). Beyond its charging prowess, the walnut base pops on any surface. It’s a bit on the pricier side, but for wireless charging that looks this good, we think it’s worth it.
Nomad Base One Max for MagSafe
The Nomad Base One Max is a stylish charger and would fit in well with a modern aesthetic. It’s a well-crafted charger that has some major weight to it, making it easy to lift a device off without displacing the charging plate. It’s certified for MagSafe meaning you’re getting the full pull when it comes to wattage and speed if you’re an Apple user. It’s compatible with most iPhones and has a raised nub to charge Apple Watches in Nightstand Mode. With that said, that little knob doesn’t fold down, so it might make this charging pad a little more difficult to bring on any travels with you.
Kerf Wireless Charging Block
This wireless charging pad is cool, plain and simple. Made from locally sourced wood, you get to choose what type of wood your charger is made from. If it’s a rarer cut, the price of the block goes up. If you already have a cable and power supply, you can opt for just the block which starts around $40. You can also get this charger engraved for that special someone in your life.
Anker Series 6 623
The Anker Series 6 623 is a unique-looking charger; it’s a small cylinder about the diameter of a small soda can. The top of the “can” flips open and magnetically anchors your phone or device to the lid, forming a kind of convertible stand that sits at about a 60 degree angle. You can use the device while it charges whether it’s sitting flat on top of the cylinder or sitting up at an angle. It also has a cool LED light ring that confirms when your power connection has been made. If you flip the lid up you’ve got a secondary charging area for AirPods or another phone too!
Satechi Trio Wireless Charging Pad
When you need to charge your iPhone, wireless earbuds and Apple Watch all at once, a single wireless charger isn’t going to cut it. Hell, even a dual won’t do. Thankfully the Satechi Trio charges three devices simultaneously. This is a great device for your nightstand, so when you wake up, you and all your devices are ready to go.
Anker Wireless Powerwave Pad
The $12 dollar price tag is already enticing, but with Qi-compatibility and 10W worth of charging power, this wireless charging pad from Anker is a great choice for convenience on a budget. The grippy charging surface helps ensure your smartphone doesn’t slide out of position and a helpful indicator light lets you know that your phone is, in fact, charging. This is wireless convenience, the affordable way.
Nomad Base One Magsafe Charger
Nomad makes some of the best wireless charging pads in the world, so it’s no surprise their products make multiple appearances in this shopping guide. The Nomad Base One Magsafe Charger is not only great looking with its glossy piano-black base and white charging center, but it also charges quickly. It has some weight to it as well making it feel sturdy and dependable. The only real downside is you need to purchase it with the Nomad 30W charger, which isn’t included. But in terms of style for a wireless charging pad, it’s hard to beat.
Moshi Otto Q Wireless Qi Charging Pad
The Moshi Otto Q has a Scandinavian-inspired fabric cover with a silicone surface ring to prevent your device from moving or slipping while in place. It also has Foreign Object Detection to stop charging if a metal object is on the charging surface. This is definitely one of my favorite designs of all the Qi charging devices I saw because it looks chic and attractive, but it is limited to charging only one device at a time.
Mophie Wireless 15W Charging Pad
Few third-party wireless chargers provide 15W of recharging power, but this wireless charging pad from Mophie steps up to the challenge. Not only does it quickly charge your new iPhone 13 like a MagSafe charger, but it can also wirelessly charge other compatible devices as well. It’s slim and compact, so it won’t clutter your desktop. Plus the ultra-suede looking top gives it a bit of oomph in your space.
Apple MagSafe Duo
What’s better than one MagSafe charger? Two, of course! If you’re on team Apple, you’ll appreciate a wireless charging pad that can charge your new iPhone 13 and your AirPods Pro at the same time. It’s powerful and provides quick charging for your Apple devices. That said, you’ll certainly pay those pesky premium Apple prices for this wireless charging pad.
Tozo W1 Wireless Charger
This wireless charging pad is sleek, and its ultra-thin design, LED lights and shiny finish make it look both futuristic and stylish. In our testing, the TOZO W1 recharged our smartphone by 50% in an hour. Admittedly, that’s not the fastest in the world, (or in our rankings for that matter), but when you consider the sleek design along with the affordable $13 price tag, it’s hard to pass on this wireless charging pad.
Belkin Boost Charge Pro 2-In-1 Wireless Charging Stand
BEST SMALL FOOTPRINT MULTI-CHARGER
This model uses MagSafe technology and is designed to charge phones and AirPods. It has a charging stand that can hold your phone, as well as a charging pad for placing AirPods or wireless earbuds. We love the sleek simplicity of this one plus its small footprint.
iOttie iON Wireless Duo
This is a great wireless charging pad for your work or home office. You can set your phone upright or landscape style on the fabric stand — which looks great, too — and place another item like your smartwatch or earbuds on the flat pad. And being able to charge two devices at once is decent value considering the $50 price tag.
Samsung Electronics Wireless Charger Trio
BEST FOR SAMSUNG OWNERS
For those who are team Samsung, and more specifically, those who rock a Galaxy Watch 4, 3 or Active 2 or Active watch, you can take full advantage of this trio charger. Place your watch in the dip, and toss your other devices on the pad. With six built-in coils, you don’t have to carefully place your devices on there either. If you aren’t a Galaxy Watch owner, you might want to consider going with the dual version instead.
Belkin Wireless Charger 10W
If you want a well-built wireless charging pad that won’t break the bank, we recommend this option from Belkin. That’s due to wireless charging that can power up your smartphone even if it has a slim 3mm-thick case on it. It can also charge other accessories like Airpods (with wireless charging) and Airpods Pro. Plus, the 10W charging capabilities will please anyone looking for a speedy charge.
Also Consider: Apple MagSafe Charger
BEST FOR IPHONE 13
If you have a new iPhone 13, it’s tough to find a more convenient and quicker way to charge your phone. The MagSafe charger magnetically snaps to the back of your phone and provides a speedy 15W of charging power. You don’t have to worry about lining it up correctly or anything, just “click” and it charges. It also charges Airpods Pro and Airpods with a wireless charging case.
Read More: The Best Chargers for iPhone Users
Belkin Wireless Charging Stand With Speaker
We’re putting this one on the list because it’s unusual… but we are not fans, if we’re being honest. The Belkin Wireless Charging Stand with Speaker combines a Bluetooth speaker with a Qi charger to give you the ability to charge while you play games, watch shows, or make FaceTime calls. The Bluetooth connection is one touch for pairing, connecting, and disconnecting.
While the design gives you additional functionality from the small speaker, there is absolutely no portability and no foldaway option for this unit. It’s kind of big and clunky and takes up more space than it needs to. You could forgive the looks and lack of portability if the speaker sounded great… which it doesn’t. It has no bass to speak of, leans to the high end and sounds small and tinny. Do yourself a favor and take a pass on this resoundingly lackluster device.
Anker PowerPort Atom 65w Slim
The Anker PowerPort Atom uses wall plug support to offer a lot of offside charging power, with a 45-watt USB-C port, a 20-watt USB-C port, and two USB-A ports. It comes with a five-foot power cord and an adhesive strip to keep it in place on your desk. It’s a compact, thin hub that won’t take up a lot of space and offers a number of charging options. When I first saw this gadget, I assumed, wrongly as it turns out, that the top surface of it would support Qi wireless charging. Technically I shouldn’t be including it here, but it is a pretty handy gadget to have for a traveling family who all need to juice up on minimal outlets. For that reason it gets honorable mention here.
Qi Chargers that are portable
Sometimes you need power on the go, and there’s no room in a bag or a pocket for a cable snagging on every little thing. These Qi chargers are highly portable and extremely versatile.
STM Charge Tree Go
OVERALL BEST FOR TRAVEL
This device is hands down my favorite for its supreme portability and versatility. It charges all three Apple devices at once, with the phone leaning against the stand, the AirPods on the backside and a pop out Watch charger on the side. When you’re traveling, the Watch charger slides back inside, and the whole thing folds down flat. Slide it into the included bag and hit the road.The biggest knock I have on this device is that it would be nice if it also had the ability to be a MagSafe power bank too, but as it is, it need to be connected to power to charge.
Mophie Snap Plus PowerStation Stand
BEST BATTERY PACK
The Mophie Snap Plus PowerStation Stand is a multitasking device that’s an exercise in versatility: It’s both a MagSafe power bank with a 10,000 mAh battery, capable of charging your phone almost two full charges, plus you can connect a USB-C cable that can either recharge the power bank or charge another device, like headphones or your watch. It has a kickstand that flips out if you want to convert it to a stand and have your phone vertical while it charges.
Mophie Snap Plus Juice Pack
The Snap Plus Juice Pack is a smaller version of Mophie’s PowerStation, providing up to 5000 mAh of power that can be used via the Qi charger or by an included USB-C cable. It’s small and light enough to fit in a pocket or purse and gives you the added security of carrying an extra phone charge around with you. It also includes a magnetic “snap adapter” for those phones that don’t have a MagSafe feature—you can essentially convert your phone to a MagSafe one.
Anker 622 Magnetic Battery (MagGo)
VERSATILE OPTION FOR TRAVEL
The Anker 622 might be the smallest, most portable charger on our list. It doubles as a power bank, and its tiny size means you can connect the charged power bank to your phone and charge away while it’s connected. It also has a USB-C port that both charges the power bank and can be used to charge devices. It’s made for iPhone 12 and up, and you’ll need to be careful about cards, keys, and pop grips interfering with the charge. It also has a cool flip out folding stand made of thin plastic that allows it to double as a stand while charging.
iOttie Velox Qi Car Charger and Mount
BEST FOR IN-CAR USE
This convenient little gadget clips to a vent in your car to allow MagSafe, secure wireless charging on the go. The silicone design doesn’t stand out, and I can attest it holds fast, even on bumpy roads. It’s easy to remove since it doesn’t install with stickers, meaning you can swap it from car to car.
Many of us are watching our impact on the planet, so if we can take care of business and leave less of a footprint, that’s worth considering.
Nimble Apollo Fast Wireless Charging Pad
Nimble’s claim to fame is that it’s eco-friendly. So if you want to feel better about the products you’re buying, this might be a good brand to check out.
Nimble’s flat single device charger, like their other models, is made from post-consumer materials. It’s capable of charging at 15 watts, which is impressive for a smaller model. It has magnetic alignment for easy device attachment for the iPhone 12 series and up. While these charging gadgets seem effective, they do look like they are made from recycled materials… In the same way that recycled paper coffee filters or paper towels are brown instead of white. The design does shout “Eco-friendly” which for me was a bit of a turn off.
Nimble Apollo Stand
Apollo’s Nimble Stand is made from 72% post-consumer material, and it does require basic assembly, as it comes flat-packed. The stand has a wide back rest that your phone leans against while charging. At 15 watts, it’s one of the more powerful wireless chargers available. You can use your phone in any orientation while charging, and the device charges through cases up to 3mm. The stand does require simple assembly as it arrives in two parts, and it’s not MagSafe to it must lean against the stand, and sit on the surface. Plus, being eco-friendly isn’t cheap; this stand is a bit on the pricey side.
Nimble Apollo Duo
The NImble Apollo Duo is capable of charging two separate devices at up to 15 watts each. It improves on the Apollo single charger model in that it lays flat and is more portable. Nimble makes the chargers from post-consumer material and it comes with a wall charger and charging cable.