One of the most important things to smartphone owners (and really any tech enthusiasts) is battery life and how long things will last. Even with the biggest battery, eventually you’ll have to recharge it and lately there have been many ways to do so, from normal charging, to quick charging, and of course wireless charging. We’ve seen wireless charging take somewhat of a hit due to quick charging, but it still is one of the most effortless ways to charge your tech.
GPEL has recently tried to “kill two birds with one stone”, so to speak, by giving you a way to charge your wireless charging capable devices and the ones that aren’t. This is their wireless charging stand that not only replenishes your favorite device but also includes USB ports so that you can connect your ‘less capable’ devices as well. I’ve had the nifty little accessory for a few weeks now and I can vouch that it works, but to get my full thoughts on it you’ll have to read below, they may surprise you.
Of course the first thing to talk about is what is included with your purchase. The package that the charger is included with has a lot of information on the sides. On the front there’s a window viewing the product and a few quips at the bottom stating: Qi certified, wireless charging, and 4 USB ports. On the side is the more specified specs such as weight, power efficiency, and more.
Inside holds the charger, a USB to micro USB cable, an AC to USB cable, and an instruction manual. If you didn’t notice, there’s no AC adapter to plug the AC cable into, so you’ll either have to go buy one from GPEL or use one from a phone or other device you already own.
The charger itself is upright with definitely helps add function to itself by allowing an easier way to view the device while it’s charging, which is great if your device supports a “night mode” of some sort. There’s also a LED light that only supports red for when the charger is in use (I’ll get more onto my gripes about that later). The bottom of the charger is weighted which helps the overall feel of the charger and helps it not tip over.
Also on the bottom are the 4 USB ports, two on either side, and in the back is the AC port and the microUSB port — both are used to power the device. On the underside, are several rubber grips that prevent slippage on slick/glass surfaces.
Pretty much what everyone wants to know, is how well the charger works, surprisingly this may be my shortest paragraph as well. It works. Simply. There’s no flash or pizazz and no quick charger, either through the ports or the wireless charger. The USB ports are also USB 2.0 so they’ll take a little while to charge some of your devices with higher battery capacities. The light also works; turns on when the charger is in use and off when there’s no device being charged. Only red though, nothing else.
There’s a few changes I’d make on this device if I had the power, or at least I’d update it to something more 2016-esque. First off, most importantly, I’d make it USB 3.0, to help with the devices that aren’t wireless (like my Nexus 6P). Then, I’d change the LED to produce two colors, RED for charging and Green for fully charge, or something of the sort. I never know if my phone is fully charged or not with the current implementation. One other major misstep is not including an AC adapter within the packaging, so you must own another adapter, which most likely you do since you get one with every phone, but that’s besides the point.
I’d see about making the wireless portion quick charging (using Samsung’s technology or the official Qi method), as well as maybe adding more internal coils to see if that helps with device orientation. Lastly, and likely one change that differs between each person using the device, is adding another color or design option — matte black doesn’t necessarily go with everyone’s style.
Overall this is a simple device and I think it works well…very well if today was 2014. While I like the GPEL wireless charger, I feel it’s a little outdated and hopefully the employees read this and take some notes. If you just need something that works and don’t mind some lengthy charging times then it definitely a worthy purchase, even for $45. I’ve just been called an elitist, since prefer my products to be more on the ‘top-notch’ side.
If you’re looking to grab this charging, head on over to GPELstore to grab one. While you’re over there, if you used the code ‘shareverything’ you can grab any other there cases for only $.01 — except the iPhone wireless charging case, which is another marketing faux pas if you ask me.