Callpod Chargepod Multi Charger Review

Posted Oct 1, 2010
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If you are reading this, then you also have a corner in your home/office where all of your gadgets gather to drink their juice – pretty much like a herd of animals gather around a pond for a drink. Yes that’s a common scenario that every gadget fan has to face, believe me there is no pretty way of doing it. In fact I was set to go as far as designing a custom workstation for myself with integrated power bricks and routing cables.

Fortunately, someone else – who also happened to be creative thought about the same issue and came up with a brilliant little device that could charge multiple devices at the same time without creating a mess of wires. And that product happens to be the Chargepod, designed by Callpod. In fact the company goes as far as to say that they design mobile necessities not mobile accessories, and going through their product portfolio certainly confirms that claim.

So back to the topic on hand, you are probably wondering how well the charging unit works, so just take a quick look at the specifications below and flip the page to find out the rest.

Specifications

Chargepod

Input AC Power

10V – 240V (Frequency 50 – 60 Hz)

Input Charge Power

6V DC – 3A

Output Charge Power

6 port x 500mA

LED Indicator

Green/Red for Power, Blue LED for each device

Weight

32g

Dimensions

2.679” x 2.653” x 0.576”

Design and Usage

The Chargepod is a compact and circular charging station with one input and six output ports. For those weak at math, it means it can charge up to six devices simultaneously. While the input port is Mini-USB Type-A connector, all the output ports are Mini-USB Type-B meaning you wont find a lot of devices that ship with Type-B charging cables, and you you’d have to purchase cables from Callpod if your device doesn’t ship with one.

The pod has an LED light on top of each port which indicates if the port is currently charging the connected device. The input LED indicator is Green while the output indicators are Blue. The unit came with an AC Wall outlet but it also supports a Car outlet which you’d have to purchase separately from Callpod. You also get a free carrying case in the package, which is nice if you plan to carry the charger around when you go out.

As for the adapters, my review unit came with three bundled in the box: a Micro-USB adapter, an Apple iPod/iPhone connector, a Mini-USB connector, and a USB 2.0 connecter, meaning you can actually connect any device which supports USB charging through the USB charging adapter. If you still need more adapters, they cost $10 a piece from Callpod.com. Oh and the unit came with a complementary voucher for any adapter of our choice. Depending on your usage, you would still need to buy another one if you want to use all the six outputs.

Using the Chargepod is straightforward. Plug in the input (AC wall charger or car charger) into the Mini-USB Type-A port and connect all the devices you want to the output ports of the charger. Once that’s done, all you have to do is sit back and relax while the pod restores the juice in your devices. In fact you should probably grab a glass of juice for yourself.

Conclusion

The Chargepod is a neat little solution to the common charger/dock/power brick/cable management issue which every gadget owner has to face. Thanks to its compact design and small power adapters, it can easily minimize your cable clutter. And since the Chargepod comes with a carrying pouch, you can also take it with you when you go out and run a risk of running out of juice.

The only thing hindering me from giving Chargepod a 5 star rating is the fact that it can get too pricy to quickly. For instance, the unit costs around $50, and each additional adapter would cost another $10. Say that you are really unlucky and the unit doesn’t ship with a single adapter which is compatible with your devices. You’d have to spend another $60 (or $50 if you use the voucher) to get compatible adapters. That cluttered workspace suddenly started looking more attractive didn’t it?

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