HomeTechnologyNewsSatechi Duo Wireless Charger Power Stand Review: Compromised Versatility

Satechi Duo Wireless Charger Power Stand Review: Compromised Versatility

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Ratings:
6/10
?

  • 1 – Doesn’t work
  • 2 – Barely functional
  • 3 – Very poor in most areas
  • 4 – It works, but has numerous problems
  • 5 – Good but leaves a lot to be desired
  • 6 – Good enough to buy on sale
  • 7 – Great and worth buying
  • 8 – Fantastic, approaching the best of its class
  • 9 – Top of his class
  • 10 – Borderline perfection

Price: $99.99

Hannah Stryker / Instructional Geek

The Satechi Duo Wireless Charger Power Stand is for those who value the convenience of an all-in-one charging solution for multiple devices, as well as the option of wired or wireless power delivery. But there is a price to pay, literally and figuratively.

At its full potential, the Satechi Duo charges three devices at once; Your smartphone and True Wireless (TWS) earphones can be recharged on the Qi wireless charging pads, while just about any other device that needs some power can use the USB-C port. But all this versatility comes with some compromises, like a lack of faster wireless charging speeds and a bulky design that might not be ideal for portable use.

So is the versatility worth the splurge? Read on for our full evaluation.

This is what we like

  • Excellent build quality
  • 18W fast charging via USB-C port
  • Tilt stand supports multiple angles
  • You can charge up to 3 devices simultaneously

And what we don’t do

  • May feel too bulky to carry
  • No magnetic adhesion
  • Can’t do 15W wireless charging
  • Cheaper alternatives available

How-To Geek’s expert reviewers get right down to business with every product we review. We put each piece of hardware through hours of real-world testing and benchmark it in our lab. We never accept payments to endorse or review a product and we never add other people’s reviews. Read more >>

Design: high quality, but too bulky

Person holding Satechi Duo wireless charger power stand
Hannah Stryker / Instructional Geek
  • Box contents: Portable charger, USB-C cable
  • Dimensions: 5 x 2.5 x 0.9 inches (12.5 x 6.25 x 2.3 cm)
  • Weight: 10.2 ounces (290g)
  • Ports: 1x USB-C

The Satechi Duo Wireless Charger Power Stand has a clean, minimalist look with a smooth matte finish that adds a touch of sophistication. In terms of dimensions, it looks and feels a bit bigger and thicker than most 10,000mAh power banks you’ll find today, partly due to the top plate that opens up and doubles as a phone holder. Since the mount can be completely folded into the body of the power bank, it’s a bit easier to store in bags than a rigid wireless charging mount.

The Duo’s stand can stand upright at any angle from about 15 degrees to 75 degrees and has no problem supporting the weight of heavy phones like the iPhone 14 Pro Max or Galaxy Z Fold 4. Beneath this top plate is another load of rubber. Ear pad that can fit AirPods and other TWS earphone cases. As you lift the phone cradle, a lower lip slopes inward to ensure your phone sits correctly in the cradle without risk of slipping. On the bottom there are non-slip rubber pads to prevent the charger from slipping.

On the front edge, an LED light blinks blue to let you know wireless power transfer is in progress and glows white to indicate charging is complete. On the rear edge, there’s a single USB-C port and four LEDs to indicate the Duo’s battery level. You can find a power button on the right side that turns the charger on or off.

Overall, the fit and finish here is top-notch, which you’d expect from a trusted brand like Satechi. It’s heavier than other power banks with similar battery capacities, though, and the opening top plate makes it one of the thickest battery packs I’ve ever used; it is almost too bulky to carry comfortably in the hand.

User Experience: Versatility Strikes… Again

Hannah Stryker / Instructional Geek
Hannah Stryker / Instructional Geek
  • Battery capacity: 10,000mAh
  • USB-C inputs: 18W
  • USB-C outputs: 10W/18W
  • Qi wireless support output: 5W/7.5W/10W
  • Qi wireless base output: 5W

The Satechi Duo features three different ways to charge a device. The USB Type-C port can provide 18W of fast charging speeds, but drops to 10W when used in conjunction with wireless charging. The main Qi wireless charging stand can output up to 10W of charging speed, which drops to 5W when charging multiple devices. For context, the latest iPhones only support 7.5W wireless charging, though they are capable of faster 15W wireless charging with official MagSafe chargers. The wireless charging pad can only output 5W of charging power no matter what, which is enough to recharge your headphones in about two to three hours.

The power bank recharges via USB-C and takes about three hours to fully charge (when connected to an adapter that supports 18W or higher speeds). You can use the phone holder to wirelessly charge your phone in both portrait and landscape orientation. For the most part, the charger works as intended. It does get warm to the touch when using the wireless charging feature, but that’s to be expected. I never noticed any cautionary temperatures on the power bank or charging devices.

One complaint I have is that there’s no MagSafe-style magnetic adhesion, even with iPhones. It doesn’t matter much when used as a desk stand, but as a wireless charger, a secure grip on your phone makes all the difference, especially when you’re on the go.

As a portable power bank, it’s not easy to hold behind your phone because it doesn’t stick to the phone and it’s too big to hold firmly in place. Even with my large hands, I had to go through some impressive hand gymnastics to hold my iPhone and this charger together in the correct position to get wireless charging to work on the go. This is something that most MagSafe compatible wireless battery packs handle much better.

Satechi Duo wireless charger power stand sitting on windowsill
Hannah Stryker / Instructional Geek

As a desktop wireless charger, the 10W charging speed on the Duo’s main stand feels limited. With the Satechi Duo, I was only able to recharge my iPhone 12 mini to about 40% in two hours, which is much slower than a plugged-in MagSafe charger can deliver. This is without using the phone while charging and without any other device charging simultaneously. If you charge your AirPods and your phone together, expect even slower speeds.

Wired charging speeds are better, with my iPhone 12 mini going from 5% to 100% in less than two hours. However, the iPhone 14 lineup now supports 20W of wired charging, and this charger won’t be able to keep up with its higher speeds.

To be fair, I liked having the option to carry a wireless charging stand between rooms without needing to plug it in, and it was helpful to charge my phone while propped up in landscape mode during video calls. But I’m not okay with waiting multiple hours for my phone to get only half of its battery life back, and I definitely don’t think it’s worth taking this power bank with me while traveling due to how bulky and non-magnetic it is.

Should I buy the Satechi Duo Wireless Charger Power Stand?

Satechi Duo Wireless Charger Power up a desk with an iPhone 14 and airpods
Hannah Stryker / Instructional Geek

Many portable chargers offer wireless charging, but not all offer a tilt stand to keep your phone upright. And when it comes to wireless charging stands that power multiple devices at once, you’ll find that most only work when plugged into a wall outlet. The Satechi Duo Wireless Charger Power Stand tries to combine the best of both worlds, giving you a wireless charging stand for your tabletop and a power bank for your travels.

However, the search for versatility ends up compromising the user experience in both aspects to some extent. The power bank itself isn’t fancy, and the lack of a strong magnetic connection means you lose out on the peace of mind that MagSafe accessories provide. As a wireless charger, it can only output 10W charging speed, which takes several hours to even partially recharge your phone.

I appreciate the many use cases Duo can be beneficial for, but it provides a compromised experience in most of them. At its starting price of $99.99, you might want to save some cash and consider a two-pronged approach instead: a fast-charging wireless power bank like the Anker 621 Magnetic Battery (MagGo) for the road and Anker’s Foldable. 3-in-1 Wireless charging station for your desktop. If you don’t mind compromises for a charging solution that really does it all, the Satechi Duo is for you.

Ratings: 6/10

Price: $99.99

This is what we like

  • Excellent build quality
  • 18W fast charging via USB-C port
  • Tilt stand supports multiple angles
  • You can charge up to 3 devices simultaneously

And what we don’t do

  • May feel too bulky to carry
  • No magnetic adhesion
  • Can’t do 15W wireless charging
  • Cheaper alternatives available

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