Unlike some models, the BEACOO dock accommodates standard Apple lightning cables. The additional space for charging AirPods is a great feature, and the 45-degree Apple Watch stand allows for use in "nightstand mode." The stand looks great on a bedside table or desk, and is available in three different colors.
Each charging station requires a separate USB port, meaning users will need three ports to charge all three devices.
Has a minimalist, contemporary design and sturdy build. Metallic finish has a sleek look, and comes in several colors. Compatible with most Generation 5 and newer iPhones, iPads, and iPods. Decent price point for an Apple product.
Not compatible with all iPhones. If you have a thicker case on your phone, you'll probably have to take it off during charging. A few faulty units reported.
The stand is made from natural, environmentally-friendly bamboo, which adds additional weight to the already stable aluminum base. The unit comes with a cord specially designed to fit the unit, which includes easy-to-follow assembly instructions.
Since the cord is specially designed, after-market replacement cords may not fit perfectly.
A multi-purpose metal charging dock that can charge an iPhone, AirPods, and an Apple watch all at once. Has "nightstand mode." Easy to use and adjust, and comes in several good-looking colors. Works with some cell phone cases in place.
Not compatible with all charging cords. Lightning connector doesn't feel very stable.
The base manages to be sturdy while taking up almost no space. The unit comes fully assembled so there is no threading of cables on delivery as required by other similar units. The base adjusts to fit most cases.
While the unit will charge all lightning connector phones, it is designed for the iPhone 7, and might not be as stable with heavier phones.
We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.
For many iPhone owners, the hardest part about owning one is having to set it down or put it away, which can make keeping the battery charged a nuisance. Thankfully, there’s a solution for that: iPhone charging docks.
iPhone charging docks are small stations that give you access to your iPhone’s screen by keeping it upright while it’s charging. Whether you want to keep your music going, keep an eye on your text messages, or use your iPhone as a second screen for your computer, a charging dock is the perfect way to do it.
The market for iPhone charging docks can get a little tricky, though. Some models are made of cheap plastic and barely keep your charging cable in place, while others are elegantly designed works of art that can charge multiple devices at the same time. (And of course, there are dozens of options in between.) Ready to find the perfect charging dock for your iPhone? Here’s everything you need to know.
Before you start looking at iPhone charging docks, ask yourself these three questions. They’ll help you find the right dock by filtering out the ones that aren’t right for you.
The first big thing to decide is whether you want a dock that charges your iPhone wirelessly or one that works with a Lightning cable for wired charging. Wireless charging is available on iPhones starting with the iPhone 8, but it’s not an option for models older than that. Wired charging is an option for every iPhone, and it provides a charge faster than a wireless charger can. Many users prefer the convenience of wireless charging, but if you need to charge your iPhone’s battery as quickly as possible, go with a wired model.
Some iPhone charging docks differentiate themselves by supporting multiple devices — including Apple’s HomePod headphones and the Apple Watch. If you’ve got all the Apple gear, look for a multi-device charging dock; many of them show off the Apple Watch’s face so you can use it as a desktop clock. If you’ve got an iPhone and a handful of other non-Apple devices, look for one with multiple USB inputs, so you can charge those simultaneously. If you’re just going to be charging your iPhone, save some money and look for a charging dock that’s made for a single iPhone.
Many iPhone charging docks are made to hold your iPhone up, but they don’t leave much room for anything else like a case, which may add bulk. Keep your iPhone’s case in mind as you’re shopping. You’ll need to get a charging dock that can charge your iPhone even when it’s on!
The AirPower Mat dream realized
Apple announced, and then later canceled, the AirPower Mat — a solution for charging your iPhone, AirPods, and Apple Watch all at once. Beacoo’s charging dock is here to make good on the original promise, and they do a remarkably good job. You’ll need to bring your own cables, but once you’re set up, you’ll be able to charge all three devices simultaneously and see your watch and phone screens easily, too.
All iPhone charging docks can perform the basics: keeping your phone held upright while it’s charging. But some models go above and beyond that to offer additional features that add even more convenience. Here are our three favorite.
Many charging docks support more than just an iPhone — so if you’ve got a tablet, smartwatch, or wireless headphones to keep charged as well, it’s worth it to get a dock that can charge them all simultaneously.
Apple fans know that design matters, and that even extends to charging docks. Some models are made from high-end materials like bamboo or walnut, while others are made from brushed aluminum in colors that match your iPhone. If you’re looking for a charging dock that matches your iPhone’s simple design aesthetic, you’ll need to pay a little more, but there are plenty of good options.
If you own an iPhone 8 or later, you can take advantage of wireless charging — often referred to as Qi wireless charging. It’s as convenient as it sounds: just drop your iPhone onto the dock, and it immediately begins charging, no cables needed. If you’re ready to ditch all of the wires, get a charging dock that supports wireless charging.
If you’re worried about your charging cable getting in the way or tangled, get some cable clips. You’re going to have at least one wire going between your iPhone charging dock and your power source, and if you want to keep it from getting tangled up (or if you just want it out of sight), cable clips are an ideal cable management solution.
If you’re using a wired iPhone charging dock, keep your phone’s charging port clean with a can of compressed air. Applying compressed air to blow out stray dust and dirt is useful for ensuring your iPhone can always charge quickly and without a problem.
If you have an older iPhone that has a headphone jack, you can listen to music while your phone is charging in your charging dock, as long as you’ve got space to get to the jack. Many people connect their iPhones to their stereos while they’re charging in a dock, effectively turning their phones into mini jukeboxes.
Most iPhone charging docks cost between $15 and $30. Models in this price range are generally good bargains — although you’ll definitely have to bring your own cable, or cables, if you get a multi-device unit. If you’re looking for a straightforward unit that keeps your iPhone in view and charging, you don’t need to spend a lot, but if you’re looking for one with wireless charging or a fancier form factor, you’ll need to pay a little more.
iPhone charging docks between $30 and $60 are great if you want a model that looks as good as it functions. Charging docks in this price range often include wireless charging, support for charging other Apple devices, or premium materials. If you need an iPhone charging dock that’s a cut above the rest, plan on spending at least this much.
Models that cost $60 and up usually include their own charging hardware, so you don’t have to supply your own cables. If you’re looking for an iPhone charging dock that’s got every bell and whistle and is made by a name brand, expect to pay top dollar.
Luxury design, budget price
We love the Rerii Bamboo Charge Stand because it offers everything we need from a wired charging dock with stunning good looks and an entry-level price point. It comes with multiple inserts so it can work with any size case you might have on your phone, and it’s got a lip for keeping your iPhone in place, even when you’ve got it set horizontally.
Only buy iPhone cables that meet Apple’s “Made for iOS (MFI)”-certified standards. Apple’s “Made for iOS” program means that you can rest assured that the cables you’re buying meet their standards and are safe to use. Another way to put it: Never buy iPhone cables from a product listing that doesn’t include their MFI standard. Shoddy phone cables can be a fire hazard!
If you own other non-Apple devices, look for a charging dock that’s platform-agnostic and supports multiple devices. It’s OK if not all of your devices are Apple devices! Many iPhone charging docks have generic USB ports that you can use to charge other devices, like an Android tablet or a fitness tracker.
Although it’s pricey, we love the Belkin Powerhouse Charge Dock for Apple Watch + iPhone. Belkin has been a long-time partner of Apple’s, and they’ve got a strong reputation for building high quality gear that’s both functional and durable. The Powerhouse Charge shows all of that off: it’s slick and glossy enough to look as good as your iPhone, and it’s got its own charger built in, so you don’t need to supply a Lightning cable. It’s also got an adjustable Lightning connector, so it will work with just about any case, and a custom charger for your Apple Watch. If you don’t want to spend time worrying about whether a charging dock will work with your phone and its case, this is the one to get.
If you’re more into wireless charging, Belkin offers the Boost Up Wireless Charging Dock. It too supports charging both your iPhone and Apple Watch simultaneously, but it charges your phone wirelessly, which makes it a lot easier to just grab it and go when you need it. It’s also got a spare USB port, so you can charge a third device at the same time, even if it’s not an Apple device.
Q. Do I have to plug my iPhone charging dock into a power outlet, or can I plug it into a USB port on my computer?
A. It’s up to you. Most iPhone charging docks require you to supply your own charging cable, so you can plug that into any USB port — including one on a “wall wart” that plugs into a power outlet on the wall.
Q. Which will charge my iPhone faster: wireless charging or wired charging?
A. For now, wired charging is the fastest way to recharge your iPhone’s battery. In general, a wired charging connection will charge your phone about 30% faster than a fast wireless charging pad can. Your charging time will vary based on which iPhone you have, and how big the battery inside it is, but expect it to take at least a couple of hours no matter how you charge it. As wireless charging standards evolve, this is likely to change, but for now, nothing beats wired.
Q. Why do some iPhone charging docks have adjustable mounts?
A. Despite many iPhone charging docks claiming to be “universal,” they often have the same problem: they don’t work great with iPhones that are in cases. Even moderately thick iPhone cases can prevent the charging dock from connecting to your phone’s Lightning port. That’s where adjustable mounts come in — they allow you to adjust the height of the dock’s Lightning cable so you can use it with any case. If you’re worried about how a dock is going to work with your iPhone’s case, get one with an adjustable mount.
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