Twelve South is making a new 2-in-1 wireless charger for the Apple Watch and MagSafe iPhones, and it might be one of the coolest designs I’ve seen in a magnetic charger.
The $129.95 Twelve South Butterfly features two aluminum-clad discs — one with a MagSafe charger, the other with an Apple Watch charger — strapped to a vegan leather strap. It uses magnets on all sides to allow the pucks to close for travel or open back to back and create a kickstand or mini pedestal. If you look at it long enough, you realize that it looks a lot like Apple’s discontinued MagSafe Duo Charger if you cut out all the ugly floppy bits.
The Butterfly is priced the same as the MagSafe Duo at launch, but it adds one USB-C port, a detachable one-meter/3.3ft braided USB-C cable, and a 30W power supply (complete with swappable international prongs). Comes with. , The flop that was Apple’s Duo was that it used a Lightning port and didn’t include an adapter. The Twelve South charger supports full 15W MagSafe iPhone charging and Apple Watch fast charging, and in certain directions the butterfly can activate iOS 17’s standby mode or the Apple Watch’s Nightstand mode (though only one at a time). Since the MagSafe Pad is also Qi compatible, it can also be used to (slowly) recharge a pair of earbuds.
Proper MagSafe chargers are far from cheap, and many of them don’t feature fast clock charging. The Zen 2-in-1 MagSafe + Watch Travel Charger costs less, at $99.99, but it looks a bit awkward, doesn’t include a power supply, and lacks fast charging for compatible Apple Watches. The Zen is still a nice little 2-in-1, but its hinge-based stand design is a bit clunky. The butterfly is more round and smooth, which takes up a little less space in the travel bag. I like that the Butterfly comes with accessories, but I do wish it offered only a charger at a price closer to the Zen.
The one complaint I’ve had in my short time with the Twelve South Butterfly (aside from the price) is that it produces a slightly annoying metal-on-metal grindy noise when its halves are back to back. Can do. It’s not nails on a chalkboard, but it’s not a pleasant listen either.
MagSafe chargers are expensive and ineffective compared to simple and fast wired charging, but it’s hard to deny the convenience of dropping off your phone and smartwatch for some quick juice with minimal fiddling. The Twelve South Butterfly blends design and utility in a package that can live by your bedside or travel with you. You just have to be willing to pay $130 for the privilege.