The best wireless phone chargers for your iPhone or Android

Declutter your life with our favorite wireless chargers for Android and iPhones

You know what’s missing from all our visions of a futuristic utopia? Wires. You never see anyone fumbling with a cable to plug in an Android phone or iPhone. Everything just magically works. We’re not there yet, but wireless charging technology is improving all the time. Leading the way toward this brave new world are wireless phone chargers. They’re not entirely wireless, because they still have to be plugged into a wall outlet, but they do free you from your nightly plug-in. You can just pop your smartphone on a pad, and know that in the morning it will be good to go.

Before you splurge on a wireless charger, though, make sure that your phone supports it. Loads of phones do now, from the iPhone XS and Galaxy S9 to the Pixel 3. For smartphones that don’t, like the Google Pixel 2, you need to buy a special replacement back or a case that enables wireless charging. There used to be a couple of competing standards, but choosing a wireless phone charger is relatively straightforward now that Qi, backed by the Wireless Power Consortium (WPC), has won out over rival Powermat.

At the iPhone event last year, Apple teased a wireless charging pad of its own, AirPower, which is built with the Qi standard and will allow you to charge your iPhone, Apple Watch, and Airpod earbuds all at the same time, but it hasn’t been released yet. If you’re looking for a wireless charger for your iPhone 8, 8 Plus, or X, you may want to check out the speed test we ran between three popular options. There are plenty of worthy alternatives, though. Here’s a list of the best wireless phone chargers for Android devices and iPhones.

Google Pixel Stand ($80)

The Google Pixel Stand is capable of charging smartphones that support Qi wireless, including the latest iPhones, at top speed, thanks the included USB-C to USB-C cable and 18W USB PD power adapter. It’s made of polycarbonate and soft silicone with a base that grips on any surface, so it won’t slide around on the nightstand. The white finish is unobtrusive, so it should blend into any environment. You can prop your phone up on this stand in landscape or portrait view and it will charge because there are two coils inside.

If you’re the lucky owner of a Pixel 3 or Pixel 3 XL, then the Pixel Stand offers some tempting extra features. There’s a microprocessor inside that recognizes your Pixel phone, and you can configure the stand through your phone’s settings, ensuring it automatically goes into Do Not Disturb mode or acts as a digital photo frame when you place it on the stand. If you play music, the music controls and album art will appear on screen (you can also use Google Assistant), and there’s a special Sunrise Alarm that uses light from your Pixel phone’s screen to wake you more gently than a traditional alarm. If you don’t have a new Pixel phone to take advantage of the special feature here, then you’re probably better off snagging something cheaper.

Specs
Power output  10w
Standard  Qi
Dimensions (phone size maximum)  3.6″ x 4.1″
Weight 160g (5.6oz)
Cable included? Yes
AC adapter included? Yes

Google

Choetech Air Vent In-Car Wireless Charger ($55)

Not all wireless chargers have to be used at home. We like this in-car alternative because it does two jobs — we have somewhere to put our phone so we can see Google Maps, and it charges the device at the same time. The Choetech mount is not too large or heavy, and the air vent grip is strong enough to support a heavy phone. We have been using it with an iPhone XS Max, and it has been held securely in place, plus it operated with the phone in a regular case too. The wireless holder costs $41, and we paid $14 for the charging adapter.

To enable the wireless charging, you have to plug a Micro USB cable into the holder and then into a cigarette lighter adapter. Choetech recommends its own Qualcomm Quick Charge 3.0 adapter, which has two outlets for convenience, but if you already have one there’s a good chance you won’t have to buy another. For us, the system worked every time, and kept the phone topped up even when using GPS. The lighter adapter did get warm, as did the back of the charging unit, but neither dangerously so and no more than we’d expect for a charger in the car. The mount has all the expected safety features to prevent overcharging and overheating. The only question is where to stuff the excess amount of cable, an issue not unique to this product.

Specs
Power output  10w
Standard  Qi
Dimensions (phone size maximum)  3.43″ x 0.48″
Weight N/A
Cable included?  Yes
AC adapter included? No

Choetech


Case Mate Power Pad Wireless Charger
($60)

It’s not the most stylish wireless charger we’ve ever used, but Case Mate’s Power Pad is extremely versatile. This rectangular pad comes in black or white and offers Qi wireless charging, including fast charging at 9W for Samsung smartphones or 7.5W for Apple’s iPhones — we tested both and it works as expected. The cable is attached to the pad and plugs into the 18W Quick Charge wall adapter that comes in the box. We got the version with the stand which allows you to prop your phone in portrait or landscape while it charges.

The pad has a nonslip, rectangular, TPU strip to hold your phone securely in place and there’s a simple white LED on the side to indicate that it’s charging correctly. There’s a wee insert so you can adjust the stand position for your phone. Both the pad and stand have feet and seem to be sturdy enough that they won’t slide around. The Power Pad will still charge your phone if it has a slim case on, but thick cases are going to cause a problem — as they do for all wireless chargers. It’s quite an expensive option, but if you want the ability to switch between pad and stand it may suit you. The option to charge in landscape is rare.

Specs
Power Output  9w
Standard  Qi
Dimensions  5.6″ x 2.8″ x 0.4″
Weight  226g (8oz)
Cable Included?  Yes
AC Adaptor Included?  Yes

Case-Mate

Native Union Drop Wireless Charger ($60)

Native Union brings its unique sense of style and design to the world of wireless chargers, and we love how the eye-catching look isn’t just for show, as the ridges are grippy rubber, making them perfect for keeping your phone securely in place. The aluminum body has a circular rubber foot underneath too, along with a small LED indicator on the side to show charging status. The cable supplied is one of Native Union’s excellent braided versions with a USB Type-C connector, and at 6.5 feet long it’s easy to move the charger around if you’re not close to an electrical socket.

The charger sends up to 10w of energy through the phone — around three hours from zero to full capacity on an iPhone, according to Native Union — and has happily worked with all but the most rugged cases we’ve tried. It also promises excellent temperature management to maintain fast charging and to keep things safe. It’s not cheap, but we like the design and appreciate the simplicity. However, it’s the fast charge system that makes us recommend the Drop Wireless Charger.

Specs
Power Output  10w
Standard  Qi
Dimensions  3.5″ x 3.5″
Weight  Unknown
Cable Included?  Yes
AC Adaptor Included?  No

Choetech Aluminum Wireless Charger ($13)

Is it really possible to get a wireless charger for $13? Yes, and what’s more, it’s not entirely bare-bones either, with a really cool little feature that many will welcome. You may know Choetech from its range of cables and other phone accessories. This is its aluminum wireless charger that’s compatible with the Qi system, and therefore the iPhone and various Android devices. The metal body helps keep the temperature down, along with internal heat management tech that ensures it’s safe.

The charger has a cool glowing ring around the edge to show it’s working, which is great during the day, but not always great at night in a dark room. The charger has a light sensor inside that automatically reduces the brightness when darkness falls. It worked well in our test and stopped the charger from being a pain when used next to the bed. The charger comes with a long Micro USB cable, but doesn’t support fast charging. You can’t have everything at this price.

Specs
 Power Output  5w
Standard Qi
Dimensions 3.3″ x 3.3″ x 0.7″
Weight Unknown
Cable Included? Yes
AC Adaptor Included? No

Tronsmart AirAmp Wireless Charger ($24)

Tronsmart AirAmp Wireless Charger
Simon Hill / Digital Trends

One issue that can cause concern with wireless charging is the build-up of heat, but this wireless charging stand from Tronsmart has a built-in fan to keep that temperature down and the charging speed up. It can put out up to 10W, which allows for fast charging of any Qi-compatible device that supports it. There’s a fairly subtle LED at the bottom that goes blue when you connect it and stays on green when a phone is charging. The light, combined with the fan — quiet as it is — make this a wireless charger we prefer to use on the desk rather than the nightstand.

You get a USB-C to USB-A cable in the box with it which is just long enough to reach desk height, but doesn’t leave much room for maneuver. You’ll have to snag your own power adapter and you’ll want one that supports Quick Charge 3.0 to get the most from this charger. It has padded feet that prevent it from slipping around and an unusual curved back shape, but it’s not the best looking device around — it’s made of black plastic with a big Tronsmart logo. What we do like about it is the low price, safety features, and speed of charging.

Specs
Power output 10W
Standard Qi
Dimensions (phone size maximum) 4.64″ x 2.9″ x 2.6″
Weight Unknown
Cable included? Yes
AC adapter included? No

Tronsmart

Anker PowerWave Pad ($46)

Anker PowerWave Pad

The Anker PowerWave Pad can output up to 10W for fast wireless charging of phones like the Samsung Galaxy S9, but it can also charge the iPhone X at 7.5W, so you should get top speed out of this pad regardless of your phone. The white disc design is fairly unobtrusive and there’s a decent weight, so it shouldn’t slide around on your desktop. There are an LED indicator and a fan inside, which is great for keeping your phone cool, but is definitely audible at times, so we wouldn’t recommend this pad for the nightstand.

We’re pleased to find that Anker has included, not just a decent 3-foot PowerLine Micro USB cable in the box, but also a Quick Charge 3.0 adapter. That means you have everything you need out of the box. Anker’s build quality is always excellent and this pad is no exception. If you prefer to be able to prop your phone up while it charges Anker does also offer the PowerWave Stand at $50, which is identical in terms of functionality.

Specs
Power output 10W
Standard Qi
Dimensions (phone size maximum) 4.3” x 4.3” x 0.7”
Weight 303g (10.7oz)
Cable included? Yes
AC adapter included? Yes

iOttie iON Wireless Fast Charging Pad Plus ($50+)

iOttie Wireless Fast Charging Pad Plus

This is another versatile wireless charging pad that can output 10W or 7.5W ensuring that you get the top charging speed possible, whether you have an Apple iPhone X, Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus, or something else. With an unusual shape and fabric covering that comes in red, gray, or white, this is an attractive device that really stands out from the crowd. There’s an unobtrusive light in the recessed front and plenty of ventilation to keep the temperature down.

There’s a USB-C input and we’re glad to find that iOttie includes a 4-foot USB-C to USB-A cable and a power adapter in the box. Interestingly, there’s also a USB-A port on the back that you can use for wired charging if you have another cable handy. If you charge two phones (wirelessly and wired) at the same time then the speeds will be a bit slower as the capacity is split between them, but the USB-A port can go all the way up to 12W when used alone.

Specs
Power output 10W
Standard Qi
Dimensions (phone size maximum) 7″ x 5″ x 4″
Weight 311g (11oz)
Cable included? Yes
AC adapter included? Yes

Aukey Graphite 10W Wireless Fast Charger ($27)

If portability and power are your two primary considerations when choosing a wireless charging pad than Aukey may have the perfect solution. The Aukey Graphite 10W Wireless Fast Charger is one of the most portable pads on our list that packs in 10W of power. At just 3.4 x 3.4 x 0.5 inches the Aukey Graphite 10W Wireless fast charger is easy to fit into a bag, or even your pocket. And since it packs 10W of charging power, it can quickly charge both Samsung Galaxy handsets or the Pixel 3 or 3 XL at 10W and iPhones at 7.5W.

In the box, you’ll find the wireless charging pad and a Micro USB charging cable along with the user manual and warranty card. On the front of the charging pad, you’ll find a small LED light to let you know when your device is charging. The top of the charger has a rubberized coating to prevent slips, while the bottom is constructed out of surprisingly heavy aluminum. You’ll also find four rubber feet on the bottom of the charger to prevent slipping and furniture scratches.

Specs
Power output 10W
Standard Qi
Dimensions 3.4″ x 3.4″ x 0.5″
Weight Unknown
Cable included? Yes
AC Adapter included? No

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