Review: Native Union's Drop XL Offers Elegant Wireless Charging for iPhone, AirPods and Apple Watch

by

With Apple's AirPower off the table for now, three-in-one charging solutions have become popular, and multiple companies are now introducing multi-device charging options.

Native Union recently released the Apple Watch Edition of its Drop XL Wireless Charger, which is a three-in-one charger able to charge an iPhone, AirPods, and Apple Watch all at once.


At $150, the Drop XL Wireless Charger is one of the pricier options on the market, but it's also one of more attractive solutions when it comes to design, and it has a unique perk that most other charging stations don't offer.

The main wireless charging base is oval in shape like many other multi-device wireless charging options on the market, but the variation in the fabric design on top gives it an edge when it comes to design. I like the different directions of the gray textile top, which provides grip, and the dark aluminum base is complementary.


There are two wireless charging spots included in the base, one where the circle design is located and another to the other side of it with the striped fabric design. Because this is a small, flat charger, you do need to charge your ‌iPhone‌ in a portrait mode orientation, which requires a bit more desk space at the top and bottom than an upright charger might need.

I much prefer upright charging options to flat charging options for this reason, and it's something to keep in mind. You can kind of place the phone a bit diagonally to save some space, but it needs a good inch and half of clearance at the top at bottom to accommodate Apple's larger phones.


The neat part about the Drop XL Wireless Charger is the detachable Apple Watch charging puck, which plugs into the USB-A port on the back. You can plug it in if it's needed, or pull it out if you want to travel with the dock or if you need both of the main wireless charging spots free. It's not an entirely unique feature, but it's one that few wireless chargers offer.


With the watch add-on plugged in, the available space is only suitable for the ‌AirPods‌ and it doesn't quite fit a phone, but with the Apple Watch charging puck unplugged, there's space for multiple smartphones.

Each of the two wireless charging spots offers a maximum of 10W of charging, or 7.5W for the ‌iPhone‌, which is the fastest charging speed available. The Apple Watch charger is a 5W charger, while the USB-A port offers 12W of power. During testing, everything charged as it should.


I will say that with most of the flat chargers on the market, you do need to sometimes make sure the charger is in the correct position to make sure the ‌iPhone‌ is actually charging, and that was a problem that I ran into on the Drop XL. If it's not positioned right, it's not going to charge, and that can lead to some nasty surprises if you position the phone in the wrong way.


I also ran into some problems with the ‌iPhone‌ X and XS where the Drop XL said that it was charging but the phone received no power, but this only happened twice in weeks of testing and it was not an issue I saw with the newer iPhone 11 Pro. I suspect this was a self-caused positioning problem, but it's something to keep an eye out for if you get this charger.


There's a single charging cable and power adapter for the Drop XL, and it comes with different detachable plugs for different countries, so this is an ideal charger to pick up if you do a lot of traveling. The charging cable is a nice, high-quality braided cable, and it's clear that no expense was spared when making the Drop XL.

Bottom Line

If you're more concerned about the look of a wireless charger than the price, the Drop XL Wireless Charger with Apple Watch charging puck is a charger option worth checking out.

It's elegant and has a design that looks great in an upscale office or home environment, but it is expensive at $150 and it's not going to be for everyone as there are other more affordable options on the market.

How to Buy

The Drop XL Wireless Charger Watch Edition can be purchased from the Native Union website for $150.

Top Rated Comments

(View all)
Avatar
22 weeks ago
What about that is elegant
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
22 weeks ago
They're going to sell dozens of these things!
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
22 weeks ago
I like the looks but I agree it's over priced...
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
22 weeks ago
I like my Nomad, as it lights up at the bottom (Small dots) if the items are charging correctly.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
22 weeks ago
That price is ridiculous! It looks okaaaay...but, not anywhere near $150.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
22 weeks ago
This is moving towards what I want. I'd pay $30 for this without the phone qi (just the airpod and apple watch).
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

iPhone 12 Lineup Rumored to Be Named 'iPhone 12 mini,' 'iPhone 12,' 'iPhone 12 Pro,' and 'iPhone 12 Pro Max'

Monday September 21, 2020 5:24 am PDT by
Leaker known as "L0vetodream" has today shared the alleged naming for the upcoming iPhone 12 lineup on Twitter. The tweet proposes that the upcoming iPhone 12 models will be titled "iPhone 12 mini," "iPhone 12," "iPhone 12 Pro," and "iPhone 12 Pro Max." The names likely correspond to the three expected sizes of iPhone 12, with the 5.4-inch model being the iPhone 12 mini, the 6.7-inch model ...

iOS 14 Widgets Offer iPhone Users Creative Home Screen Ideas

Sunday September 20, 2020 8:43 pm PDT by
Updated on September 22nd with hands on video. In iOS 14, Apple introduced ‌the concept of Home Screen‌ widgets, which provide information from apps at a glance. Widgets can be pinned to the Home Screen in various spots and sizes, allowing for many different layouts. Despite the relative lack of...

Hands-On With iOS 14 Widgets, Custom Icons, and Home Screen Setup

Tuesday September 22, 2020 3:25 pm PDT by
Apple with iOS 14 introduced widgets on the Home Screen, leading to unprecedented levels of customization for the iPhone. Combined with Shortcuts that let you change an app's icon, iOS 14 lets you create a whole new look for your Home Screen. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. We've been following along with some of the creative alternative Home Screen designs that M...

PSA: New Apple Watch Owners Have to Return Entire Device for Ill-Fitting Solo Loop or Braided Solo Loop

Monday September 21, 2020 3:26 pm PDT by
With the Apple Watch Series 6, Apple introduced two new band options, the Solo Loop and the Braided Solo Loop. These new bands are unique because they have no clasps, buckles, or other fasteners, and instead use a stretch design to allow them to pull onto the wrist over the hand. Because these bands are not adjustable, Apple sells each one in nine different sizes to make sure each person...

Apple's iPhone 12 Event Could Happen on October 13 Based on Rumors From Mobile Operators

Wednesday September 23, 2020 11:51 am PDT by
Apple's upcoming iPhone-centric event could perhaps be held on Tuesday, October 13, according to information shared with MacRumors by an employee at a UK cellular carrier. There's no way for us to confirm the dates at this point in time nor are we sure on the credibility of the source, but even without a rumor, Tuesday, October 13 is a good guess based on Apple's historic launch timelines, ...

New Images Leak of iPhone 12 Braided USB-C to Lightning Cable

Thursday September 24, 2020 2:37 am PDT by
Rumors suggest Apple's upcoming iPhone 12 models will ship with a new Lightning to USB-C cable that includes a braided fabric design. Images of the purported cables were leaked in July, and today leaker Mr White has shared new images that give us a closer look at what we might get included in the iPhone 12 box. The photos show a USB-C to Lightning cable with a clearly braided design rather...

Interest in iOS 14 Home Screen Ideas Helps Pinterest Break Daily Download Record

Wednesday September 23, 2020 4:37 am PDT by
Apple's introduction of widgets on the Home Screen in iOS 14 has driven a surge in interest among users looking to customize their iPhone, and that has reportedly had a knock-on effect for Pinterest, whose iOS app has seen record downloads as users flock to its content seeking design inspiration. As reported by TechCrunch, App Store intelligence firm Apptopia was first to note the impact of ...

Apple Releases First Public Betas of iOS 14.2 and iPadOS 14.2 With New Shazam Control Center Options

Monday September 21, 2020 10:34 am PDT by
Apple today seeded the first public betas of upcoming iOS 14.2 and iPadOS 14.2 updates to its public beta testing group, a few days after seeding the first betas to developers and a little less than a week after releasing the iOS 14 and iPadOS 14 updates. Public beta testers who have signed up for Apple's beta testing program can download the iOS and iPadOS‌ 14.2 updates over the air after ...

Apple Emphasizes That Solo Loop May Increase in Length Over Time, Updates Sizing Guide With More Specific Instructions

Wednesday September 23, 2020 8:26 am PDT by
Apple on Tuesday updated one of its support documents to emphasize that the new silicone rubber Solo Loop for the Apple Watch may increase in length over time, as mentioned in fine print at the bottom of the Solo Loop product page. Apple has also updated its printable Solo Loop sizing guide with more specific instructions, as noted by 9to5Mac's Michael Steeber. The guide now advises users to ...

Microsoft Announces Outlook for Mac Redesign, Improvements to iOS and watchOS Apps

Tuesday September 22, 2020 8:56 am PDT by
Microsoft has today announced plans to bring a new design to its Outlook for Mac app along with several other improvements and features for Outlook on iOS and watchOS. In preparation for the public release of macOS Big Sur, Microsoft has been testing a new design for Outlook on Mac. The design includes Microsoft's Fluent icons and several design cues from Big Sur such as rounded corners....