The Belkin BoostCharge Pro Fast Wireless Charger for Apple Watch + Power Bank 10K is a very capable, slightly expensive battery pack best suited for Apple Watch owners — and Apple enthusiasts generally.
|Embedded Apple Watch charger||Expensive|
|Power Delivery means it can charge lots of different gadgets||Why no included Lightning cable?|
|Can also wirelessly charge AirPods Pro 2nd Gen||Gets warm under consistent load|
There are so many battery packs — or battery banks if you prefer — that you could buy to keep your gadgets charged that I couldn’t possibly count them all. As such, to stand out, you’ve got to do something genuinely different. No, different coloured cases do not count.
The Belkin BoostCharge Pro Fast Wireless Charger for Apple Watch + Power Bank 10K is certainly different. For a start, if somebody was foolish enough to allow it, it would be worth at least 67 points in Scrabble, because that’s a hell of a product name.
It’s also, as the name says, a power bank with an inbuilt Apple Watch charger. That’s a neat concept, but is the actual product any good?
Mostly yes – but it really only makes sense for those with Apple Watches.
This is a compact battery pack, and I appreciate that as it gives it a lot of travel potential. In the hand it reminds a lot of the heft of a classic flip phone, although a tad heavier. Still, compared to the absolute bricks that are most 10K power packs, it’s quite svelte.
The key feature here is of course the embedded fast Apple Watch charger that sits on one end of the battery pack. That’s the same end that also houses a single USB-C socket, power lights and an on button. That’s your lot for this unit, but then, power banks are rarely complex creatures.
It’s also almost everything you get in the box, too, aside from a slender product manual and a single short USB-C to USB-C charging cable. Here I’ve got a bone to pick with Belkin. It’s not that there’s no included charger in the box per se, but this is a premium priced product with rather specific Apple user appeal.
You can’t use an Apple Watch without an iPhone, and you do make Lightning cables, Belkin – so why not include one in the box with your $139.95 power bank?
Yes, I know, the answer is “because Belkin would rather make a secondary sale” as well.
The 10,000mAh battery inside the Belkin BoostCharge Pro Fast Wireless Charger for Apple Watch + Power Bank 10K is rated as being good for up to 14 charges of an Apple Watch Series 8, or in other words, two weeks of operation. I haven’t quite tested it to that exhaustion extent, though I suspect it might start getting a little shaky after 10 or so days given the relative inefficiency of wireless charging. Curse you physics restraints of the observable universe!
What the Belkin BoostCharge Pro Fast Wireless Charger for Apple Watch + Power Bank 10K does do, however, is offer fast Apple Watch charging if you’ve got a newer model that supports that. So if you’ve been a bit slack (I would never, honest) and forgot to charge your watch overnight, it’ll top up very nicely in the morning while you have your coffee and before you have to rush to the office.
It’s not just an Apple Watch charger, either, as it’ll also charge the 2nd Gen AirPods Pro as well. This works and the magnets do try to snap the case into the right position, but unlike with a watch I did find I had to do a little jiggling to get it to fit and start charging.
Then there’s the USB-C connection, which, like every other battery pack out there, can be used to provide power to external devices. Belkin claims up to 20W with Power Delivery compatibility, so you can fairly rapidly top up an iPhone, for example… as long as you remembered to bring a Lightning cable with you.
However, that inclusion of PD got me thinking, and that’s always dangerous. 20W isn’t fast, but would it be enough for the Belkin BoostCharge Pro Fast Wireless Charger for Apple Watch + Power Bank 10K to top up a MacBook Air? There was only one way to find out, even though it’s not in any way listed on Belkin’s Compatibility list to speak of.
The answer, surprisingly and pleasingly is yes, with a few caveats. I tested with a MacBook Air 15, and it took a while before the MacBook Air was happy to take charge.
It was also glacially slow, as you’d expect, but in a pinch, it can work. The other catch there – and the reason that kind of use case probably isn’t listed as compatible – is that it did warm up the Belkin BoostCharge Pro Fast Wireless Charger for Apple Watch + Power Bank 10K quite a bit.
That’s probably not good for ongoing battery health for the unit, but it’s at least nice to know that if I’m in a pinch without any other charger, this could keep me going for a little while longer.
Belkin BoostCharge Pro Fast Wireless Charger for Apple Watch + Power Bank 10K: Alex’s Verdict
Battery packs need to stand out, and the Belkin BoostCharge Pro Fast Wireless Charger for Apple Watch + Power Bank 10K certainly does that.
But it is a very specialised unit, only really suitable at this price if you do have an Apple Watch and need that specific charging from your battery pack without taking the existing cable with you. You for sure can score this level of battery power for less if you just need the actual electrons, but if you’re heavily into the Apple ecosystem, it’s a nicely built unit with plenty of appeal – and a price point to match.
Belkin BoostCharge Pro Fast Wireless Charger for Apple Watch + Power Bank 10K: Pricing and availability
The Belkin BoostCharge Pro Fast Wireless Charger for Apple Watch + Power Bank 10K retails in Australia for $139.95
Every other battery pack ever if you just need power – but you’ll need to bring your own Apple Watch charging cable along for the ride.