Examiner.com | June 3, 2012
Tech review: Power2U AC/USB Wall Outlet
If you're looking for ways to move your home into the 21st century, the Power2U AC/USB Wall Outlet may be a good place to start. The Power2U replaces your standard two-plug AC wall outlet. It still gives you two AC outlets, but it also adds two full-sized USB ports for charging any of your gadgets. The USB ports are located to the left and right of the middle of the AC faceplate. Each USB port has a self-closing protective cover to keep grit and grime out. It also acts as a switch to turn on each port when it's in use and to turn each port off again when unplugged. This eliminates parasitic power drain that starts to add up on your power bill. I really like this idea. However, I wish the covers were a little easier to open and had an option to keep them locked open for those who don't think they need protective blast shields over their USB ports or have too much trouble trying to open them. I also would have liked to see some kind of diagram showing which way to plug in your USB cable since the protective cover prevents you from quickly looking into the USB port to determine the proper orientation.
I installed the Power2U in our kitchen where family members frequently like to plug in their various USB wall warts to charge their cell phones and other gadgets. It was an instant success. It eliminated some of the clutter and freed up both AC outlets. It also greatly reduces the chance of accidentally forgetting to pack chargers because they had been left plugged into the kitchen wall socket. I did, however, find that it was quite a tight fit in the wall. If you have a big mess of wires in there that are longer than they need to be, you might have to shorten some of them to make room. I also should note that I tried installing this into an older home at first, and it was not able to fit into the wall at all. It was just a little wider than the hole it was supposed to fit into. I highly suggest carefully measuring where you are considering installing one, especially if it's in an older home.
View slideshow: Power2U AC/USB Wall Outlet
The Power2U's USB ports put out 5.2 volts and 2,000 mA, which equals 10 watts. As I found in my testing, this is more than enough to charge an iPad and an iPhone at the same time. I also found it was able to charge a dead iPhone up to 100% in two hours. After testing nearly every USB charged device I could find in the house, I think I can say with confidence that the Power2U should be able to recharge any device that is charged from a USB port.
In conclusion, I feel the Power2U is a high quality, reliable, and very practical choice to make when looking at AC wall outlet options. It definitely reduces the amount of unsightly wall adapters you have hanging around your home with its 2 built-in USB ports. It will even save you a little bit on your electric bill by shutting off power to the USB ports when you unplug your charging cables from them. I definitely recommend them to anyone building a new home or those looking to upgrade and simplify their current residence.
- Very convenient and elegant way to charge your stuff
- 2 USB ports built into a AC wall outlet
- Reduces the clutter of wall chargers taking up all your AC outlets
- USB ports fully turn off when cable is unplugged, reducing wasted energy
- 2 USB ports provide 5.2 volts / 2,000 mA / 10W can charge an iPad & iPhone at the same time
- Can't tell which way to plug in USB cables
- Self-closing USB protective covers make it a little difficult to plug in USB cables
- Tight fit in some AC outlet wall boxes
- Facade screw covers fall out easily
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