Wayne Thorp will speak at the 2015 AAII Investor Conference this fall; go to www.aaii.com/conference for more details.
Store and charge up to five mobile devices at once from a single power source.
As someone with a myriad of mobile devices, I encounter times when outlets to charge them all are at a premium. This is especially true in my office “computer lab” where I have several PCs, laptops, tablets and accessories in use in the same work area. At home I am still using the PowerMat 2x I reviewed way back in 2010, which allows me to charge two different devices at once. There are times, however, when I need to charge more than two devices, such as my iPhone, iPad, Galaxy Tab and Nexus tablet. For those looking to charge several devices at once, Griffin Technology recently launched the PowerDock 5, a space-saving, counter-top charging and storage station that can charge up to five devices at once from a single power source. I received one a couple of weeks ago and have been testing it out at the office.
Very few products that I have reviewed here leave an immediate negative impression, but the Griffin PowerDock 5 was one of them: It’s a white and black plastic platform with a rubber bottom and six clear plastic dividers that snap onto the base, creating space to hold up to five devices. The rack looks and feels cheap, although the whole thing costs $100. There is a separate power brick and plug that fits into a slit in the outer edge of the base unit to plug into the bottom. Overall, with the dividers attached, the PowerDock 5 measures roughly 7.7 inches by 5 inches by 3 inches.
On the right side of the base are five USB ports, each of which switches automatically between 0.5 amp, 1 amp or 2.1 amps, depending on the device you are charging.
The PowerDock 5 can charge up to five devices at once. Past PowerDock products from Griffin had integrated connectors specifically for iOS devices. However, the cost to do so for the new Lightning connection has led Griffin to shift to a universal USB charging device. This means you can plug in any device that uses a USB charger, including iOS devices, Android devices, etc., as well as Bluetooth accessories such as headsets and keyboards.