So for the better part of a week, I’ve been trying out a charging unit from TechOrbits. Relative to the wall chargers that I’ve tested in the past, this is a sizeable unit. It has 8 USB ports along one side, and the top of the unit is a Qi wireless charging pad. I guess you could say it’s bit on the “beefy” side, as it has a little bit of heft in the hand, and that seems to correlate to its size, which is that of a small brick.
The look of the unit that I got was fairly monochromatic. being almost completely covered in a glossy black, save for some lighting and the company logo that rests on the charging port. The logo is in white, but that gets covered over while a unit is charging. When this happens, one of the lights turns on. It rests underneath a white, plastic strip that runs the length of the charging device, and the entire thing lights up blue once wireless charging begins. With my proclivity to charge my devices overnight, I found this to be problematic; in the unit’s defense though, it’s about the only beef that I otherwise had with it. This strip of plastic is a good three to four inches in length, and one inch or so in width, so there’s a lot of light that it emits, and it does so brightly in an otherwise dark room. I ended up putting something over the top of it at night, to darken the room, and in the longrun, I will likely find another way to cover it over; electrical tape or some such. The device is pretty handy, but this does take the proverbial shine off of it.
Along one of the shorter ends of this charger are 8 USB ports, lined up vertically. Each one is capable of charging at 2.4 amps, though the device does cap out at 12, so if you plug in too many, it will likely be slowing down. I tested my phone and tablet seprately, as well as together (and threw one another couple of devices, just for giggles), and in both scenarios the charger did fine. The wireless portion cranks out at about 1 amp, so with our without other devices charging via USB, my phone’s 3220 mAh battery picked up around 13% charge. Via USB, which has the higher amperage, it was nearly double that. My tablet has a 5,000 maH battery, and both alone and with other items plugged in, it picked up between 16% alone and 23% when I was piling on other stuff, just to try and tax it (a little). In both tests, the devices were left alone for thirty minutes while charging, though in the second test I added my smartwatch, and a kindle (though the latter was added about two minutes into the test). At least with that foursome all charging concurrently, the device did just fine and there was no appreciable dropoff in its ability to maintain a good clip for its rate of charge. Had I been able to plug something into all 8 ports though, simple math tells us that 12 amps via 8 ports means they aren’t all going to get 2.4 amps. Their webpage indicates “smart charging”, where the device monitors its own temperature, as well as the charging rate of other devices. I didn’t have enough handy to tap it out completely, but from what I experienced with it, I had no reason to think that this wouldn’t perform as well as it could, focusing its charge where devices need it.
Given its utility, handling so many devices that charge via USB (even if the charging rate would go down after five devices are plugged in), and the wireless charging, it’s not hard to see use for something like this. Given the bright blue light that it beams out while charging wirelessly though, this does diminish what I would rate the object. Given my use case, I’m going to give this a 7. Were I using it in a workplace, or some other setting where I’m not trying grab forty winks (so the bright strip of blue light isn’t messing up my sleep), I’d easily give this an 8.
The charging unit can be purchased HERE