Belkin Gets MagSafe Right With the 3-in-1 Wireless Dock

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This is the Belkin Boost Charge 3-in-1 Wireless Charger with MagSafe, to give it its full name, and it will charge your iPhone using MagSafe, your Apple Watch, and a pair of wireless headphones all at the same time, no messing around. It’s versatile and attractive, but it’s also very expensive at $150. Is it the second MagSafe accessory we feel happy recommending, or should you save your money?

Design

Belkin is very good at minimalist designs like this, just look at the 2015 Charge Dock for proof, and how it has refined the shape over the last few years, resulting in the Boost Charge 3-in-1 here. The wide, circular base is metal, covered in white plastic, and with a soft, grippy base. It is also available in black. A chrome metal shaft extends from the back of the baseplate, ending in a T-shaped piece holding the charging discs for the iPhone and the Apple Watch.

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The disc for the iPhone uses the new MagSafe charging system, where magnets grip on to your iPhone 12, 12 Mini, 12 Pro, or 12 Max to hold it in place, and deliver wireless charging power at up to 15W. On the other side is a standard Apple Watch magnetic charger, and a Qi wireless charger lives in the base. All three can be used at the same time, so there’s no waiting around for your iPhone to finish charging before it moves on to the Watch.

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It’s a very pretty, subtle, modern piece of design and it looks great on a bedside table, or on your desk. It’s solidly made, has enough weight that it doesn’t shift around, and is perfectly balanced so nothing falls off. A case-less iPhone, or one in an Apple MagSafe case, is very secure on the dock indeed, to the point where you can interact with the screen without fear of the phone suddenly dropping off the magnet.

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However, the grip from the MagSafe charger for the iPhone is compromised if you use a non-MagSafe case. I found the angle is too steep for the iPhone to safely stay in place if your case does not have magnets inside. The Apple Watch has no problems staying on its charging plinth, and the base has a concave shape to keep a headphone case from slipping off.

Charging

MagSafe’s 15W wireless charging system isn’t the fastest out there. Placing the iPhone 12 Pro on the charger with 20% battery remaining saw it reach 75% after an hour, but then another hour to crawl to 100%. I primarily see the dock being used overnight, or as a simple way to keep the battery topped up when seated at your desk, so the slow speed isn’t a massive concern.

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Versatility is good as MagSafe works in both portrait and landscape orientation, so you can watch video while the phone is charging, and it doesn’t get in the way of the Apple Watch when placed in landscape either.

Charging the Apple Watch is the same as using the included charging puck, and it takes about 90 minutes to go from flat to full. The Qi wireless charger in the base worked with most true wireless headphones I placed on it, including Samsung’s Galaxy Buds Pro, Galaxy Buds Live, and Galaxy Buds Plus, along with B&O’s E8 headphones, and Huawei’s Freebuds Pro. There’s a handy LED in the base which lights up to indicate everything is working as it should.

About the price

The Belkin Boost Charge Wireless Charger with MagSafe is available now from Apple stores and Belkin online for $150, or 140 British pounds. At first glance this is a high price to pay for a charging accessory, but it’s better value when you consider what you get. It has the MagSafe charger built in, and you’ll pay $39 for that alone from Apple. Apple’s MagSafe Duo Charger is $129, only charges two products at once, and is more for travel than it is for your desk.

If you don’t have an Apple Watch Belkin also makes the $100 Boost Charge 2-in-1 MagSafe charger, which may suit you better. It doesn’t have the Apple Watch charging plinth, but retains the MagSafe support for your phone and the Qi charging base for your headphones, and the sleek design too. Both are expensive accessories, but as MagSafe technology is likely here to stay, there shouldn’t be any concern over it becoming useless should you upgrade to the next iPhone.

Belkin’s making MagSafe better

Belkin has embraced MagSafe technology, which didn’t have the best start in life, and integrated it into helpful and attractive products. The Boost Charge 3-in-1 Wireless Charger joins the in-car MagSafe car mount in being a MagSafe accessory we recommend, although the price is still quite high for what it is.

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I like the way the Boost Charge 3-in-1 looks and the convenience it provides. If you own a current iPhone, an Apple Watch, and a pair of wireless charging headphones, the Belkin Boost Charge 3-in-1 Wireless Charger makes good sense, as it charges them all in one place at the same time, with no hassle at all, and looks good when doing it. It’s an at-home charger though, so if you want a multidevice charger to use when traveling, Apple’s MagSafe Duo Charger will be a better bet.

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