Feb 25th, 2022

In the event that this is your first time checking out one of my charger reviews, let’s just get it out of the way. I love MagSafe to the point where I’ve picked up multiple MagSafe adapters for my Android phones including the Galaxy Z Fold 3 and Pixel 6 Pro. MagSafe is one of those technologies that I wish Apple could (or would) license to other phone makers so that it can be integrated into new phones.

Being able to attach your wallet to the back of your phone, or place it on a wireless charger without needing to worry about alignment is just extremely satisfying and convenient. While I carry around an iPhone 13 Pro Max on a daily basis, I also want my favorite Android phones to have the same functionality.

This leads us to the INTELLI StepUp Wireless Charging Station, which solves more than a few problems that you might have with current charging solutions. As the name suggests, this is a 3-in-1 wireless charger capable of keeping your phone, Apple Watch, and headphones charged up without needing a bunch of different cables. These charging stations are a dime-a-dozen, but not all of them feature MagSafe integration, so needless to say, I was excited to try this out.

What We Like

The biggest reason why you might want to consider this charging station is if you’re looking for a solution to charge all of the Apple devices that you carry with you on a daily basis. This isn’t a new concept, as there are plenty of solutions out there, including some that feature MagSafe support. But the INTELLI StepUp offers something that even Belkin’s ultra-popular charging station doesn’t, and that’s flexibility.

Looking around the StepUp, we have a non-slip pad on the bottom, a USB-C charging port on the back, the main charging pad on the top, and then a pop-out charger on either side. On the left, pushing the charging pad in will reveal the Apple Watch charger, offering enough space between the charger and your desk or tabletop for whatever watch band you are using. Then on the right, and closer to the bottom, the pop-out charger can be revealed for your AirPods or other wireless earbuds.

Being able to save precious space on my desk when I need to is extremely convenient and something that I wish other accessory makers would offer. If I just want to charge my watch, I can pop that charger out and then push it back in. If I need to charge my AirPods, I can pop out that charger and then pop it back in. Then, I’m still left with a MagSafe charger for my iPhone and other phones that are using MagSafe adapters or cases.

Another “feature” of the INTELLI StepUp that I really enjoy is the USB-C port on the back. Instead of sticking us with an integrated power cable, we have the option to swap them out for something a bit more durable or a longer cable if we need to. Let alone the fact that it just allows us to use a different cable if the one included stops working.

What We Don’t

INTELLI Desktop Charger Review - 6

For the most part, if I buy a phone that has a glossy finish on the back, one of the first things I do is head over to dbrand to get a skin for it. It’s why you’ll almost never see me with a phone that doesn’t have a skin on it, as these provide a better grip without making my phone look like the fingerprint magnet it is. Why do I mention this? Because the phone charging pad on the INTELLI StepUp sports a glossy finish that can really look gross after a while. It’s not as bad as the Pixel 6 Pro, per se, but it really doesn’t look great. Thankfully, this is only limited to the main charging pad, as the two pop-out chargers feature a matte plastic finish.

One of the problems that I noticed when using the StepUp with my various devices is the difference in magnet strength. Most of the time, I use my iPhone without a case, just because it’s big enough and I don’t want to add even more bulk to it. But when using the StepUp charger with my iPhone, I noticed that the magnets just aren’t all that strong. The phone never just slips off the charger, but it does feel like it could if my desk shakes for whatever reason. This isn’t an issue with my Pixel 6 Pro and is only a problem with my Galaxy Z Fold 3 if I’m trying to keep the display open.

Should You Buy One?

The INTELLI StepUp is a unique charging solution that may not be perfect for everyone. But if you own an Apple Watch, AirPods, and an iPhone, this is a wonderful option to consider. What makes this so appealing, aside from the versatility and space-saving design, is the price.

Most of the popular MagSafe charging stations, such as Belkin’s 3-in-1 Charger, are pretty expensive. INTELLI’s charging station comes in at just $50 and is readily available from Amazon so you won’t have to wait forever for it to arrive or hope that your local big box store actually has them in stock.

INTELLI StepUp Magnetic Wireless Charging Station

 

INTELLI StepUp Magnetic Wireless Charging Station Rating: star_emptystar_25star_50star_75star_full (4 / 5)

The Good

  • A unique and versatile MagSafe charging solution
  • Being able to replace the USB-C cable is fantastic
  • Reaches peak charging speeds to match Apple’s MagSafe requirements
  • Much less expensive than the competition
  • Non-slip base keeps it from moving around

The Bad

  • Primarily designed with Apple products in mind
  • Doesn’t work if your phone lacks MagSafe
  • Main charging pad is glossy

The Bottom Line

The INTELLI StepUp is a wonderful solution for those who have an Apple Watch, AirPods, and an iPhone (or Android phone) with MagSafe. The side chargers can pop out when you need them, or retract when you don’t, making for a compact wireless charging solution.