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This $40 portable charging pad is perfect for Apple fans

InfinaCore T3 Tri-Charge wireless charging pad.

InfinaCore T3 Tri-Charge wireless charging pad.

Adrian Kingsley-Hughes/ZDNET

ZDNET’s key takeaways

  • InfinaCore T3 Tri-Charge wireless charging pad for the iPhone, Apple Watch, and AirPods, available right now for $40.
  • It’s compact, the MagSafe works well, and the fancy lights can be turned off if you don’t like them.
  • You have to supply your own USB-C power adapter.

It’s a new year, and people are already thinking about their next vacation — well, I know I am. One of the things that I want to scale down this year is the number of cables and chargers that I travel with. Not only is carrying a handful of chargers a pain because of the bulk and weight, but every place I stay soon becomes a mess of tabled cables and chargers filling every available wall outlet. 

I hate it.

Also: A dodgy USB-C cable and cheap charger can definitely destroy your iPhone

What I need is a handy dandy 3-in-1 wireless charging solution that can charge my iPhone, Apple Watch, and AirPods from a single charger. And for $40, the InfinaCore T3 is the perfect traveling companion.

InfinaCore T3 Tri-Charge Wireless Charging Pad

ZDNET RECOMMENDS

InfinaCore T3 Tri-Charge Wireless Charging Pad

This 3-in-1 charging solution will wirelessly charge your iPhone, Apple Watch, and AirPods from a single USB-C charger.

InfinaCore T3 Tri-Charge wireless charging pad tech specs

  • Input: 5V/3A, 9V/3A, 12V/3A
  • MagSafe pad outputs: 5W/7.5W/10W/15W
  • Apple Watch pad output: 5W
  • AirPods pad output: 5W
  • Weight: 4.8oz/135g
  • Charger: 25W minimum, not supplied
InfinaCore T3 Tri-Charge.

InfinaCore T3 Tri-Charge.

Adrian Kingsley-Hughes/ZDNET

The T3 is a bit of a transformer. You can lay it flat and use it as a three-pad charger if you have the space, or fold it into a more compact triangle if space is limited and it’s perfect for charging an iPhone and Apple Watch. The T3 also folds into a collapsed concertina for ease of packing and carrying.

The three configurations of the T3.

The three configurations of the T3.

InfinaCore/ZDNET

The T3 uses magnetized tabs to keep it in the triangle or collapsed concertina configuration, and the magnets are of the Goldilocks power — not too strong, not too weak, but just right.

Also: Apple Watch users warned against using ‘counterfeit or uncertified’ chargers

You do need to supply a USB-C charger with a minimum power output of 25W to power the entire charger (a cable is supplied). There are a lot of decent chargers out there that fit the bill, such as this Ugreen 30W GaN USB-C charger that you can pick up for only $12! 

There were three things that I was eager to test about the T3.

First, output. Does it deliver the claimed outputs? My testing says suggests yes, you get what’s promised, even when all three charging pads are in use. I’ve seen plenty that fail at this hurdle, so this is a win for the T3.

Secondly, does it get hot in use? Because I’ve seen some go supernova. Again, I’ve been pleasantly surprised here, with the charger remaining cool throughout.

Also: Anker’s latest wireless charging accessories are all in on Qi2. Here’s why that matters

Finally, durability. I’ve been using and abusing this charging pad for a few weeks without any problems.

I’ve also been impressed by the strength of the MagSafe charging ring. Quite a few chargers I’ve tested fail because this is weak, either allowing the iPhone to fall off the stand or not attach properly (the biggest cause of overheating). No problems here with the T3.

The charger also features a cool green light, perfect for a bit of ambient mood lighting or to find it in the dark. If this isn’t your thing, there’s a button that allows you to turn it off.

Cool green mood lighting -- which you can turn off if that's not your thing!

Cool green mood lighting — which you can turn off if that’s not your thing!

Adrian Kingsley-Hughes/ZDNET

ZDNET’s buying advice

For $40, the InfinaCore T3 Tri-Charge wireless charging pad is a great charger, either for travel, or if you’re looking to clear up the clutter on your desk or nightstand. It’s compact, lightweight, well-made, and stylish.

And while I know some will balk at having to buy a separate charger, when you can pick one up for only $12, this whole package is still a very reasonable $52.


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