With the Apple Watch released a few weeks ago and still making its way to customers around the world, Twelve South has started shipping its signature HiRise dock designed for any Apple Watch model. While the Apple Watch Magnetic Charging Cable offers a simple and convenient way of juicing the device even in the dark, the issues with Apple’s MagSafe technology still remain including an overly easy way to accidentally remove the charging magnet from the Apple Watch.

While HiRise still uses the same charging cable, its form factor helps alleviate the issue of your watch separating from the power source while offering a more attractive presentation of your Apple Watch. With its $50 asking price, though, how does Twelve South HiRise for Apple Watch stack up as one of the first charging stands? Read on for the details and more photos…


Key Details:

  • Works with any Apple Watch
  • Mostly metal build with soft plastic contacts to avoid scratching Apple Watch
  • Some assembly required, but minimal and quick
  • Requires your own Apple Magnetic Charging Cable
  • Offered in silver or black

Charging the Apple Watch without a dock can result in a few annoyances: the MagSafe end easily detaches from the watch with any amount of pull, the magnet itself isn’t weighted much so it can easily slide off a bedside table, and you have to snap the MagSafe end to the watch rather than quickly dropping the watch onto a bigger target.

HiRise carries a sturdy build at just over 0.41-pounds to tackle the sliding issue, and Apple Watch rests on the stand (supported by magnet) offering a larger, stationary drop zone for charging.

HiRise does require a slight amount of assembly as it ships in three main pieces with an optional (and spare) screw and tool to secure the base if needed. A simple setup guide walks you through each step of assembly; no tools are required aside from the optional hardware that’s included. You’ll just want to make sure you have an available Apple Watch Magnetic Charging Cable on hand before you put HiRise together.

The simple assembly process consists of four quick steps. First, you position the arm part of the charging stand to fit angled onto the base. The arm will stand on its own once positioned properly. Second, you’ll need to position the Apple Watch Magnetic Charging Cable into the coin-like slot with the concave side facing outward, then run the cord tightly through the pre-cut groove along the arm and the base.

This process is perhaps the trickiest as the cable tries to resist the angles necessary for concealing it. The optional screw can be used to secure the pieces together if the cable offers too much resistance, but this means your charging cable is more difficult to access if you plan on frequently removing it. Finally, the base snaps into place to hide the embedded cable.

While HiRise benefits from its metal frame with added weight and sturdiness, Twelve South chose plastic to line the areas of the stand where both your watch and band will make contact. This addresses a factor each Apple Watch charging stand will need to consider: metal on metal easily scratches stainless steel. Twelve South highlights that HiRise can support any Apple Watch (aluminum, stainless steel, or gold) and any band material (rubber, leather, or metal).

HiRise looks like it can easily collapse into a flat, compact position for easily packing it into a bag or suitcase during travel, but be sure to note that its position is completely fixed. A future iteration could perhaps incorporate an unseen hinge of sorts for making HiRise more travel-worthy, especially since it’s a bit of a hassle to remove your cable if you don’t have a spare handy.

Overall, HiRise is an attractive charging stand that offers a more convenient experience for showcasing and juicing your Apple Watch when you aren’t wearing it. The materials resemble the existing line of HiRise docks including the HiRise for iPhone, which brings up another point.

The stainless steel Apple Watch collection varies from the look of the aluminum Mac- and iPhone-like HiRise stands made by Twelve South, which means the HiRise for Apple Watch matches closer to the Sport version. HiRise still provides a solid presentation and the available black option may match closer with the stainless steel watches (and be my preference), but I believe an opportunity for a more premium (and pricier) HiRise presents itself.

The ultimate test of HiRise’s utility and usefulness is this: after using it for several nights in a row then returning to just using Apple’s charging cable on my nightstand, I immediately missed having the HiRise on my bedside table. After taking my Apple Watch off its charger the first morning without HiRise, the magnetic end of the cable slid off the table onto the floor.

HiRise for Apple Watch is among the first charging stands to start shipping to customers so there’s not yet much competition to compare it to, but its a solid solution on its own with an asking price the same but perhaps more reasonable than Apple’s Sport band. If you’re considering a useful accessory for your new Apple Watch whether it’s already arrived or still making its way to you, Twelve South’s HiRise for Apple Watch is a worthy charging stand.