Compactness, stability, aesthetics … There are several criteria for choosing the best Apple portable charger for watch. We have tested dozens of them and selected the best desktop devices in our opinion.
Depending on how actively you use the gadget during the day and how energy-intensive functions you use, you will need to charge it every 2 days or, more likely, every day. For most people, this means putting it on your bedside table at night, on your bathroom cabinet when getting ready in the morning, or on your desk at work.
You can, of course, just use the cable, but its connector can slide on the table or bedside table (or worse, accidentally pull out), the watch can accidentally turn off, and as a result we will get a dead battery. A cradle or docking station provides a stable and secure place to recharge your watch.
The main selection criteria for the Apple portable wireless charger
In our opinion, a good charging cradle should, above all:
- Allow docking the watch quickly and easily.
- Keep the watch stationary even if you accidentally hit the stand or the cat decided to play with it.
- Be compatible with any watch strap: open or closed.
- For high-end models ($ 25 or more), the holder must include its own MFi-certified charging connector. This allows you to keep this cable on the go and eliminates the need to buy another for $ 25-35 (due to the cost of parts and MFi certification, cheap models are difficult to charge to the connector). The high-end model should also display better materials and have a more aesthetic design. It will definitely be bigger and more stable.
- The best Apple portable charger must include a built-in battery and an MFi-certified charger connector. We did not take into account models that have a battery, but require the use of an Apple charging cable, as this is a more cumbersome solution and for some users it increases costs.
Beyond these criteria, we prefer chargers that can keep the watch horizontally when it goes into night mode (the Apple Watch turns into an alarm when it’s docked) because it makes it easier to glance at the watch when it’s asleep. But since Nightstand mode has and horizontal and vertical orientations, this is not a requirement.
Principle of choice of the best Apple watch portable charger in 2021
To find the best low-cost models, we looked through the bulk of offerings for an Apple battery charger portable under $ 25 that met our criteria and received exceptional reviews (from both pros and Amazon), and were aesthetically pleasing enough to spark desire to install them on your bedside table.
Since these models have no electronic components or removable parts and are very inexpensive, brand is less important than reliability and workmanship. However, we still prefer well-known and respected manufacturers.
Testing principles of the Apple portable charger
After selecting the bulk of the instruments, we came to the conclusion that in fact only “field” texts in real conditions are capable of showing an objective picture. Indeed, the only way to appreciate device truly is to try it out in practice, more than once, not twice, or even ten.
Even after several nights of charging, it is difficult to know if small nondelivery of the model in the long term can lead to any malfunctions. For example, if you need to press down on the watch so that it fits well on the charging disc, will this not lead to loosening of the mechanism or the appearance of dents. Alternatively, if you are using a dual-device charger, you’ll need to remove your phone to restore your watch. Therefore, we tested each gadget for at least a month every night in order to identify hidden defects.
Charging station Spigen S350
Like other inexpensive charging stands, the Spigen 350 is a kind of case, which you can place on your bedside table or desk. This Apple portable charger for smart watch is our favorite among dozens of promising models that we tested, as it is one of the few models that meets all our criteria without significant flaws.
The S350 can be fitted with any strap, open or closed, and has a non-slip base to prevent slipping. Place the watch on a stand and it will be in a horizontal position directly above your bedside table or table. The S350 is not very tall, you can easily put on a watch or take it back. There were no problems with the loss of contact with the charging connector.
Like most other low-cost mounts, the S350 has an incredibly low price point (just $5) because it recycles the watch charger rather than providing its own MFi-certified connector as other more expensive models do. This connector is easy to install and remove, so there is no need to buy an additional one if you intend to travel with the watch. Moreover, it is quite small (about 5 cm in height), and you can take it with you on the road.
Belkin Valet Charging Station
An Apple portable phone charger that can work with both devices is a luxury, but it is worth considering buying one, since you do not have to buy two separate chargers and you will save not only money, but also space on your bedside table.
This gadget (available in matte silver, black or rose gold) is expensive, but no more than two quality charging stations for your phone and watch, and it is the best dual-function charging stand we have found. This high-performance docking station charges your phone (except iPhones released in 2018) and watch from a single power outlet. In addition, unlike many competitors, it includes MFi-certified chargers, which is one of the reasons for its high price tag.
The weighted metal base of the Apple portable phone charger measures 13.3 cm wide, 8.2 cm deep and just under 1.9 cm high. The non-slip surface on the underside helps keep the station securely in place. One of our favorite features is the adjustable connector, compatible with most iPhone cases, located to the left of the Lightning Phone Stand: a button on the back of the dock lets you raise the connector for thicker cases or remove it for thin cases and bare phones. The connector also tilts back and forth so you never press down on your iPhone’s Lightning connector.
Studio Neat’s Material Dock
This gadget works with all smartphones with a Lightning connector. Its rounded base is made of solid walnut with a beautiful finish and non-slip pads on the underside to prevent slipping. The pads adhere well enough to smooth surfaces, so you can grab your phone with one hand by simply pulling it out of the dock. The two vertical sections supporting the phone and watch (the latter in landscape mode), with an open or closed strap, are made of cork.
If you do not have an electrical outlet on hand for a while (for example, on weekends in nature), the Zens Charger is the best battery-powered model. It only costs a few bucks more than a charging cable, but includes its own 1300mAh battery and an MFi-certified built-in charging pad. In our testing, it charged the watch more than 2 times and only charged itself once. In addition, it is compact and light enough to be forgotten in your backpack or purse. So you can safely take it on a picnic or on a trip.
Spigen S350 works great, but it is difficult to imagine simpler and more restrained. If you’re looking for a docking station with a little more personality, the Elago W3 will transform your charging connector into a vintage miniature Macintosh while remaining functional, stable and affordable.
The Apple portable wireless charger W3 is made entirely of soft silicone, black or classic beige (choose beige for a guaranteed vintage effect). Once the charging connector for your Apple Watch is in the cradle (the cable comes out of the back of the cradle, at the base, like a computer’s power cord), simply slide your Apple Watch between the bezel and the case. Then the watch becomes the screen of a mini-computer (funny anecdote: the Apple Watch has a 42 mm screen with a resolution of 312 × 390 versus 512 × 342 for the first monoblocks Macintosh). The open top provides easy access to the side of the watch,
The silicone case of the W3 usually fits securely to your desk or nightstand. However, since its base does not have a non-slip surface, it is not as stable as our top pick. The device is compatible with both open and closed bracelets.
Apple Magnetic Charging Station
The Apple battery charger portable is our favorite because it looks aesthetically pleasing, performs well, and its versatile design allows it to be used anywhere, even when traveling.
The body of the charging station is a 10 cm disc with a non-slip synthetic leather top and a soft base that will not scratch wherever you put it (the weight keeps it from sliding on the table). In the center, there is a connector that, in its original position, allows you to charge any model with an open strap by placing it on the charger.
All devices from our top turned out to be really good and worthy of attention. However, keep in mind that the better the gadget, the more actively they try to counterfeit it. At the same time, faking a charging station is many times easier than, for example, a smartphone. Therefore, today on the market there is a huge number of low-quality counterfeits, produced by someone unknown. Of course, such fakes not only do not function properly, but also fail much faster due to the use of low-quality parts.
When you go to the store to shop, be sure to check carefully what exactly is being offered to you. It often happens that even the sellers themselves do not know that instead of the original product they offer you a fake. Therefore, be careful and attentive.