Review: Twelve South Offers a Creative Solution to Wireless iPhone Charging With the 'PowerPic'

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Original poster
Apr 12, 2001
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Since the iPhone X, 8, and 8 Plus introduced Qi wireless charging into Apple products for the first time last year, more and more users have begun hunting for the best wireless charging pad out there. We've detailed this topic in numerous posts over the past year, and in the end, many buying recommendations for Qi mats come down to support for Apple's 7.5W fast wireless charging and overall design.


In both categories, Twelve South's all new PowerPic Frame for iPhone excels. The accessory is a wooden picture frame that fits any vertically framed 5"x7" photo, while also charging any Qi-compatible smartphone. In Apple's lineup of devices, that means it supports the iPhone 8, 8 Plus, X, XS, XS Max, and XR, but if you use Google or other Android smartphones that have Qi wireless charging, you can use the PowerPic as well.

Setup

PowerPic essentially comes in three pieces: the wooden picture frame, the back plate that makes up the main charging section of the device, and a small metal support arm. The support arm connects easily into the back of the PowerPic, and a little cutout allows for cable organization.


The included cable is a 1.5m USB-C to USB-A cable. PowerPic doesn't come with an AC adapter, so if you want to plug it into a wall then your outlet will need a USB socket, or you can use any traditional wall adapter brick.


To change the image in the frame, PowerPic is built like a regular picture frame. The back has small clips that hold the charging plate in place, and if you swivel these clips away, the plate will disengage from the wooden frame. Even with the added weight of the charging plate, PowerPic didn't feel particularly heavy to me, and the support arm kept the accessory nice and sturdy wherever I placed it.


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Article Link: Review: Twelve South Offers a Creative Solution to Wireless iPhone Charging With the 'PowerPic'
 

BrettArchibald

macrumors regular
Jul 31, 2007
115
642
Jeez.. Is that me or its really idiotic idea?
It's you.
[doublepost=1542204654][/doublepost]
Here's an idea: Let's COVER UP the picture in our frame we're trying to show and bought this product for!

Interesting concept, but no fanks.
Wireless chargers work best over a long period of time.
Like when you're asleep.
Like when you've got your eyes closed and are not looking at pictures in frames.
So yeah, it works pretty well...

It's a picture when you're awake, and a charger when you're asleep?
What's not to get, and what's not to like about that?
This is such a basically simple but brilliant idea!
If I didn't already have a brand new Logitech upright stand next to my bed, I would buy one of these.
 
Last edited:

Mydel

macrumors 6502a
Apr 8, 2006
731
441
Sometimes here mostly there
It's you.
[doublepost=1542204654][/doublepost]

Wireless chargers work best over a long period of time.
Like when you're asleep.
Like when you've got your eyes closed and are not looking at pictures in frames.
So yeah, it works pretty well...

It's a picture when you're awake, and a charger when you're asleep?
What's not to get, and what's not to like about that?
This is such a basically simple but brilliant idea!
If I didn't already have a brand new Logitech upright stand next to my bed, I would buy one of these.
haha. You are definitely target group. Looking for solution of imaginary issue...
 
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iMerik

macrumors 6502a
May 3, 2011
587
406
Upper Midwest
haha. You are definitely target group. Looking for solution of imaginary issue...
I disagree. I think Brett has decided not to be negative and pessimistic, which is rare in these forums. Some people still like printed, framed pictures in their house, including their bedroom. Why not come out with a solution that allows them to have that and a hidden phone charger? It's not a solution to an imaginary issue... it's just a fun solution that some people might appreciate.
 

Justanotherfanboy

macrumors 6502a
Jul 3, 2018
795
1,308
Jeez.. Is that me or its really idiotic idea?
Nope. Not just you.
This is super weird.

Either you have 5x7 photos of like lightning or something lying around... I suppose that would be appropriate; or you have no issue with covering up your loved ones face with your phone all night, every night.
Both choices seem a bit odd.
Having a photo of electricity could be a bit excessive, as you’d likely only use this at night.
In the scenario where you use a regular photo instead, well... covering up someone in a photograph has long meant a sign of disrespect, that you wish they were removed from that memory.
Even though, logically, there’s a necessity to do so to use this product, I feel like there is an undercurrent of rudeness, blocking the ability to see a photo of your loved one, to charge your phone.
 
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SamuelFleming

macrumors newbie
Nov 14, 2018
17
22
I think its a cool idea. I would put a couple of these in my living room and dinning room. Maybe even in the kitchen. I have lots of family who are always looking to charge when they come over and this would help keep them charged, but when no one is using it it looks nice. Those of you who are getting all down on the product clearly have different aesthetic ideas.
 

Justanotherfanboy

macrumors 6502a
Jul 3, 2018
795
1,308
I think its a cool idea. I would put a couple of these in my living room and dinning room. Maybe even in the kitchen. I have lots of family who are always looking to charge when they come over and this would help keep them charged, but when no one is using it it looks nice. Those of you who are getting all down on the product clearly have different aesthetic ideas.
Ain’t that the truth!!!!!!!

I have VERY different aesthetic ideas than you indeed, if you want your family coming over & immediately covering up all your photos with their phones, lol.
 
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DonutHands

macrumors regular
Dec 20, 2011
224
163
Los Angeles
Its a clever way to hide yet another piece of technology in our homes.

While I do not have a bedside or end table charger, if I did, I would much rather see a picture sitting in its place for most of the day and only cover it up while charging. The other option is to have a visible piece of technology sitting on my table that only gets used a small portion of the day.
 

Tucom

macrumors 65816
Jul 29, 2006
1,195
269
It's you.
[doublepost=1542204654][/doublepost]

Wireless chargers work best over a long period of time.
Like when you're asleep.
Like when you've got your eyes closed and are not looking at pictures in frames.
So yeah, it works pretty well...

It's a picture when you're awake, and a charger when you're asleep?
What's not to get, and what's not to like about that?
This is such a basically simple but brilliant idea!
If I didn't already have a brand new Logitech upright stand next to my bed, I would buy one of these.
Yeah, and I prefer to place on something that logically and aesthetically makes sense - not some gimmicky doo-dad TRYING to be different but making no sense at all - what about when you need to charge it during the day?

"HEY! I NEED the picture frame honey!"

And it works pretty well? Glad you bought one and got to try one.

Glad you're so incredibly pumped about this picture frame - I have a feeling you're going to be their #1 fan with a foam finger.

Thanks for the essay of text rebuttal btw.
[doublepost=1542212313][/doublepost]
Plus, if you don't want to spend $80, you can try a DIY solution.

View attachment 804054
Dude your effort in these forums is unrivaled. The lengths we go to for comedy hahaha.
 

3rdiguy

macrumors 65816
Sep 17, 2012
1,182
342
Well considering it was our owner and co-founder's idea I think a "firing" might be a bit excessive... ;p
I don’t understand this product. It’s advertised as if the iPhone screen is going to stay on long enough to show the picture for a substantial amount of time. In reality, the screen will go dark,especially on OLED iPhones. Sure it’ll look nice when you wake the screen but for the majority of the time the screen will be black and just cover up picture
 

3rdiguy

macrumors 65816
Sep 17, 2012
1,182
342
Jeez.. Is that me or its really idiotic idea?
I’m trying to figure out how is thee iphone screen gonna stay on long enough to continuously show the image. We cannot completely disable sleep screen anymore. Sure it charges but it’ll just be a dark screen over an image in a frame . But at least the phone will be charging. I just dont see the practical application of this product.
 

iMerik

macrumors 6502a
May 3, 2011
587
406
Upper Midwest
I don’t understand this product. It’s advertised as if the iPhone screen is going to stay on long enough to show the picture for a substantial amount of time. In reality, the screen will go dark,especially on OLED iPhones. Sure it’ll look nice when you wake the screen but for the majority of the time the screen will be black and just cover up picture
No, for the majority of time you will have a picture frame with a printed picture in it and not a phone.
 

nutmac

macrumors 601
Mar 30, 2004
4,550
2,728
Jeez.. Is that me or its really idiotic idea?
If you have lots of pictures around, I think this is an ingenious (although extremely pricey since it doesn't even come with AC adapter) solution.

For my money though, I prefer table lamp with built-in charger, such as TapTronics.
 

bluespark

macrumors 68000
Jul 11, 2009
1,951
2,135
Chicago
I’m trying to figure out how is thee iphone screen gonna stay on long enough to continuously show the image. We cannot completely disable sleep screen anymore. Sure it charges but it’ll just be a dark screen over an image in a frame . But at least the phone will be charging. I just dont see the practical application of this product.
You don’t change a phone to continuously view a picture, you charge it so the battery won’t die. When you’re not changing it, this lets you have a framed picture rather than a charger on your table/desk/nightstand. That’s the application.
 
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