Top positive review
17 people found this helpful
Pretty good, but...
on December 15, 2010
I purchased one of the earlier iGo laptop chargers, and used it for years, with the optional splitter to allow it to also charge my phone and PDA at the same time. Great gadget. With this new version, they've changed the design so that a) it shuts off when the current drops below a trip threshold, and b) that they are going to the USB charger approach, so assuming that whatever device you have can be charged via either a standard USB-A connector (which is on this charger), or through one of iGo's USB charge adapter cables.
My gripes are - first, for folks that are used to their older chargers which just "worked", this thing should have a more obvious "Press here to start charge" on it. I actually wasn't sure if it was even working, when I plugged it in, and the laptop indicated no charge happening. I had to read the quick start guide to figure out that you need to push the big green button to make it work. They really should have designed it so that when you plug it in to the wall it should ASSUME that you want to charge something (why else would you plug it in??), and turn it self on.
Second - it also should have a mode where it will run for an extended period as a "normal power provider" (always on, aka NOT green), where it would continue to source a small amount of current to a laptop in use, to keep the laptop in "AC Run" mode. There is no reason they couldn't make a default where it will run for say 4 hours automatically after plug in, and after than go into its power save mode. Or, use a "hold the button down" to lock place it into this mode, then after a while revert to "green mode" (again, maybe 4 or 6 hours) and shut off completely when charge is done.
As a wish list item (assuming a product designer of this thing might actually read this) - it could optionally go through a cycle, where even after it has shut it self off, it could wake up periodically and check the charge on the device it's connected to (perhaps every few days) to help keep your battery charged, since many batteries don't like going in to deep discharge (which is exactly why most companies chargers always stay on in trickle mode, wasting that little bit-o-juice).
Finally, some of the toys out there require more than 5VDC (or even AC) to charge them, so a USB charge adapter doesn't work. So, if your toy doesn't already charge from a USB cable/power supply, you will likely need to buy yet another adaptor, since it won't work with this one. I'm sure Amazon would be happy to sell you one...
I hope this unit also gives me the years of service that the previous one did (which my wife still uses).