Holiday Gift Guide

Gallium Nitride chargers are this season's hottest stocking stuffer

Even though they're physically way cooler.

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Apple killed the power adapter with the iPhone 12 and it looks like Samsung might too. So if anyone you know is expecting a new Phone this holiday season, why not get them a charger better than anything that Apple makes?

GaN (Gallium Nitride) is slowly becoming the hot new material in gadget design. It’s both more thermally efficient and conductive than Silicon, so GaN chargers are far smaller than typical ones and offer the same or more power than chargers of old. Because GaN chargers lose less power to heat, even 100W chargers using the technology stay cool under full output.

If you need to pick up powerful stocking stuffers for anyone you know complaining about their slow bricks or lack of a charging brick at all, we’ve rounded up some of the best and most interestingly designed chargers utilizing GaN technology to satisfy even the most power-hungry gadgets being gifted this season.

Petite but powerful — This 2”x2”x1.2” charger manages to pack more power than the standard charger that ships with Apple’s 13” Macbook Pro while being nearly half the size and weight. It maintains a standard USB-A port for any devices that still need it, and can output 45W from the Type-C port and 12W from the Type-A when you’re connected to both. When only charging from the Type-C port, you get the full 65W charge. You can confidently take your laptop or tablet to the coffee shop without needing to worry about being that person whose behemoth charger takes up the whole power strip or wall outlet thanks to this charger. And, if you prefer to live the all USB-C life, Aukey sells a similarly-sized charger called the Focus.

For the bedside — A flat charger is something so incredible yet subtle you wonder why these aren’t the default in every phone box. If you prefer to charge your phone on your nightstand, you’ve no doubt got a wall wart behind there with a cable uncomfortably bent by being pushed so close to the wall. Well, with a flat, and remarkably thin charger like this, you can actually push your nightstand flush against the wall without worrying about damaging your cables. What’s more, it delivers a whole 10W more power than most stock chargers!

For the go-bag — Remember traveling? That was fun! If you know a jetsetter who’s managed to get all their various gadgets, be it a laptop or headphones, to use a Type-C cable, then this may be the perfect charger. It’s barely larger than Apple’s 20 W charger, but can deliver up to 90 W of power out of one port. That’s enough to charge all but the most demanding laptops at full speed. When two devices are connected, it allocates power intelligently between the two ports. So if you’re charging your iPhone and iPad Pro, you’ll have more than enough headroom to ensure each gets a full charge. This should pair wonderfully with Apple’s upcoming folding MagSafe Duo charger whenever that ships.

Home power station — If you or your family prefer to charge multiple devices in one place, this charger is perfect. It plugs in via an AC cord instead of an integrated plug, so your placement can be much more flexible. It’s also small and light enough to be stuck on the back of a table or dresser to hide away so you can just snake your cables up to place on top for charging. When only the USB-C ports are being used, it can fast-charge most devices when you need a quick top-up. It also has two USB-A ports for any devices that can’t use USB-C cables like a Kindle or an older Bluetooth speaker. When all the ports are in use, it can provide a standard charge to every connected device, great for overnight charging.