A large desk mat with a unique MagSafe charging feature, Journey’s ALTI is a sleek, stylish and — most importantly — useful addition to your desk space.
Offers two wireless charging spots
Adjustable charger can sit on left or right side
Wipe-clean vegan leather on one side, smooth felt on the other
Leather surface isn’t great for fast mouse sweeps
Felt side could get dirty
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Space-saving devices are top of my most-wanted list when putting my desk accessories together. The more I can avoid adding extra cables, stands and chargers to my small work-from-home space, the better. At first glance, the Journey ALTI Wireless Charging Desk Mat might appear to run counter to that idea — for what’s essentially a mouse mat, it’s big. Real big! But by combining it with some smart wireless charging features and an interchangeable surface finish, it’s earned itself a permanent place on my desk. Read my full review to see why I’ve grown to love it so much.
Journey ALTI Wireless Charging Desk Mat: Price and availability
The Journey ALTI Wireless Charging Desk Mat is available now directly from Journey, priced at $129.99 / £109.99. It’s one of those rare occasions where those in the UK get a product cheaper than their US counterparts, seemingly because Journey ships locally in the UK.
It’s a lot of money to spend on a Desk Mat — the most expensive desk mat I can even think of is the Razer Goliathus Chroma Extended at an RRP of $99, and that’s got an RGB array around its edge! But when you consider a good-quality 2-in-1 MagSafe charger will usually start at around $50, the price of the ALTI starts to make a bit more sense.
Journey ALTI Wireless Charging Desk Mat: What’s good?
So, a quick rundown first of all of what you’re actually getting. The Journey ALTI Wireless Charging Desk Mat comes in two parts. The first is the mat itself, which comprises of two panels stitched neatly together — on one side you get a vegan leather (available in black or off-white), and on the reverse side a soft felt surface.
On one end of this is a magnetic strip that attaches to a 3.9-inch by 14.6-inch MagSafe charging panel, which magnetically snaps to the mat’s edge. It’s powered by USB-C (a cable comes in the box, but you’ll need your own plug), and has an embedded-and-elevated MagSafe charging puck for your phone, and a recessed section for wirelessly charging devices like AirPods, too. Though we’re looking at the ALTI from an Apple user’s perspective, it’ll work just fine with other wirelessly-charged devices, too.
With a magnetic connection on either side of the MagSafe strip, you can put the charger on either the left or right-hand side of the mat, depending on your preferences. Overall, the mat combined with the charging array measures a large 26.8 inches by 14.6 inches.
That’s a huge surface to work on, and having two different surface styles to switch between is great. With two fabrics stitched together, you can lift the leaf of one and store documents between the two for easy access, too. It has a professional look, and its extra functionality will save space on your desk. And while it’s not a particularly fast charger, it will keep your devices topped up during the day while you work, while also within easy access and view — handy if you’re using, say, Universal Control features between a Mac and your desk-charging iPhone 14.
Journey ALTI Wireless Charging Desk Mat: What’s not so good?
Look, this is an expensive mouse pad. It does more than your average mouse pad, sure. But you’re going to need to ask yourself if you even need more than your average mouse pad. This is a luxury item.
Otherwise, my grumbles with the ALTI are minor. The leather side isn’t all that great for fast and smooth mouse sweeps, which will bother gamers. And that’s unfortunate, as the leather side is the one I anticipate people using most often, as it’s easier to keep clean than the felt side, which can collect debris more easily.
I also wasn’t a fan of how the mat shipped to me, rolled up in a box. It meant that it took a few days before the curls flattened out from the shipping storage. I’m not sure what the alternative is though, and it was only an issue for about the first week before it naturally rolled out.
Finally, I’d have been happier with a smaller version of the ALTI, as it’s just a tad too big for my desk to fit comfortably on. But that’s a personal preference. The ALTI does what it says it will, and does it well.
Journey ALTI Wireless Charging Desk Mat: Competition
There isn’t really another device like the ALTI out there, but you could get a very similar experience by lining up the rather good Belkin Boost Charge Pro 3-in-1 Wireless Charging Pad alongside a mouse pad on your desk. It’s not quite the same experience, but you’d bag an extra charging space for an Apple Watch, too.
Journey ALTI Wireless Charging Desk Mat: Should you buy it?
Buy it if…
- You want a large, flexible charging mat
- You want to save space on charging devices on your desks
- You don’t mind splashing out on a luxury item
Don’t buy it if…
- Your devices don’t feature wireless charging, or you already have wireless chargers on your desk
- You have a small desk, or are a gamer needing fast and smooth mouse swiping
- You reasonably think paying this much money for a desk mat is wild
Journey ALTI Wireless Charging Desk Mat: Verdict
If you want to add a luxurious finishing touch to your workspace, with just enough in terms of added functionality to justify its high asking price, the Journey ALTI Wireless Charging Desk Mat is an excellent choice. Though gamers may find its surfaces just a tad too frictious, everyone else will benefit from its wireless charging and professional looks.
Gerald Lynch is the Editor-in-Chief of iMore, keeping careful watch over the site's editorial output and commercial campaigns, ensuring iMore delivers the in-depth, accurate and timely Apple content its readership deservedly expects. You'll never see him without his iPad Pro, and he loves gaming sessions with his buddies via Apple Arcade on his iPhone 14 Pro, but don't expect him to play with you at home unless your Apple TV is hooked up to a 4K HDR screen and a 7.1 surround system.
Living in London in the UK, Gerald was previously Editor of Gizmodo UK, and Executive Editor of TechRadar, and has covered international trade shows including Apple's WWDC, MWC, CES and IFA. If it has an acronym and an app, he's probably been there, on the front lines reporting on the latest tech innovations. Gerald is also a contributing tech pundit for BBC Radio and has written for various other publications, including T3 magazine, GamesRadar, Space.com, Real Homes, MacFormat, music bible DIY, Tech Digest, TopTenReviews, Mirror.co.uk, Brandish, Kotaku, Shiny Shiny and Lifehacker. Gerald is also the author of 'Get Technology: Upgrade Your Future', published by Aurum Press, and also holds a Guinness world record on Tetris. For real.
By Tammy Rogers