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Wireless Charging Station Review for iPhone 4 and More: Powermat 3X Mat with Powercube
      #40411 - 04/11/11 10:57 PM

Wireless Charging Station Review: Powermat 3X Mat with Powercube for iPhone and Many Phones
Reviewed by Tong Zhang

Editor's Ratings (1-5): 4.5

What's Hot: Very slim and small and supports hundreds of device.

What's Not: Only operates on 5 volts.

Powermat was the first to bring electromagnet charging to mass market via stores like Best Buy and online outlets, and remains the top provider in terms of charging station configurations, number of devices supported and more. The Powermat 3X Mat is the newest addition to the line up, and it offers three spaces to charge up to 3 devices. To work with the charging station, Powermat offers Receivers that connect your mobile devices to the charging station. These Receivers comes in jacket style, except for the iPod and iPhone dock, and they are designed to work with specific devices. What if your device isn?t supported by any of these Receivers? Powermat has a solution, the Powercube. The Powercube is basically a receiver cube that has a short charging wire that works with multiple types of tips. When the Powermat is bundled with Powercube the combination can charge most phone, handheld gaming and MP3 audio device models.



Design

For a station that?s capable of charging 3 mobile devices, the Powermat 3X Mat is surprisingly small measuring 3.75 x 9.375 x 0.375 inches, then again it?s not designed to have your entire device sitting on it. The Powermat 3X Mat charging station is slim, looks like a miniature skateboard. There are three charging slots on the Powermat 3X, and each slot has a circle marked the center. When you hover a receive over the center of a charging space, it will automatically find the right position via magnet and you will hear an audio confirmation and the white LED will light up. The LED light will turn off when the device is fully charged. The Powermat 3X comes with a slick AC charger that has a cord winder built-in.



The Receivers come in different shapes to form fit the devices they are designed to work with. The iPhone 4 Receiver jacket is the slimmest of them all, and has the best design for getting your phone in and out quickly. The iPod touch Receiver, like most BlackBerry Receivers, has a cube that protrudes on the back. The iPhone 4 Receiver is also easier to use, compared to the iPod touch Receiver: the top of the case is easily peeled back for quick access to your phone. And you don?t need to take the top half of the Receiver off to put in your device or take it out. Since the charging Receiver uses the 30-pin connector on the iPhone 4 and iPod touch, the Receivers offer syncing ports and come with syncing cables. The iPod touch Receiver also comes with an audio extension cable for an easier reach of the audio jack. To see the full list of Receivers visit: http://www.powermat.com/us/receivers.html



In addition to the Receiver model, Powermat offers the Powercube to charge phones made by Samsung, LG, HTC and other devices such as DS models, PSP and other Apple products. The Powercube along with numerous connector tips come in a tidy cardboard box. You also get a storage container to take the most used tips with you. The package is small and well designed.



Features

Like the Energizer Qi, the Powermat 3X charges your mobile devices wirelessly. The charging station operates on 5 Volts and should be safe for most mobile devices. In addition to connection via magnet, the charging station and the receivers are also communicating via RFID. This communicates allow the charging station to turn off when the devices are fully charged to save power and avoid overcharging. The Powermat 3X Mat charges the iPhone 4 in 2.5 hours from zero-percent to fully charged, and takes a bit shorter time to fully charge the iPod touch.

Thanks to the additional 8 connector tips that come with the Powercube, we also tested charging devices made by Samsung, LG and HTC (via microUSB connector), and the Powermat 3X worked well with all devices. These interchangeable tips include micro USB, mini USB, Samsung, LG, Apple, Nintendo DSi, Nintendo DS Lite, Sony PSP connectors. The AC charger that powers the Powermat 3X Mat is a world charger with input voltage of 120-240V.





What the Kit Includes

? Powermat 3X Charging Mat
? Powercube Universal Receiver
? Mini USB Tip
? Micro USB Tip
? Samsung Tip
? LG Tip
? Apple Tip
? Nintendo DSi Tip
? Nintendo DS Lite Tip
? Sony PSP Tip
? Power Supply (100-240VAC) with built-in cord management

Conclusion

For wireless charging, Powermat 3X Mat with Powercube covers most of your mobile devices if not all of them and is relatively cheap compared to the Energize Qi Inductive Charger. The charging station is slim and worked well with all the phones we tested. Powermat also offers charging mats that work with only one or two devices for cheaper prices, and they also offer a home and office mat that has an additional USB charging. The selection of Receivers and charging mats make a lot of sense for users who often change devices and carry multiple devices with them on the road. Since the Powermat 3X Mat operates on 5 Volts, anything that requires higher output voltage like some tablets won?t work with it.

Price: $79 for the Powermat 3X Mat with Powercube; Receiver prices vary.
Web site: Powermat 3X Mat with Powercube


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