Newer Technology® : News Room : Press Article : Review: Power2U AC/USB wall outlet, By William Deborde, from Lanoc Reviews

Lanoc Reviews | May 13, 2013

Review: Power2U AC/USB wall outlet

NewerTech Media Coverage
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1. Power2U AC/USB wall outlet

As a necessary evil, gadget batteries, require charging from time to time and in this era where gadgets now dominate our everyday life it has become difficult to even find room to even plug them all in. For the most part longer battery life and charging stations have been the answer, but thanks to Newer Technologies there is a much easier solution to this problem and it is as simple as changing the wall outlet you plug everything into already. Follow me as I take a look at the do it yourselfers’ solution to the charging problem, the Power2U AC/USB wall outlet.

Product Name: Newer TechnologyPower2U AC/USB wall outlet

Review Sample provided by: Other World Computing

Written By: William

Pictures By: Brennon

Voltage: 125V
Amperage: 15A or 20A
Grounding: Self
Standards : NEMA 5-15R or 5-20R, NEC Tamper Resistant
Pole: 2
Wire: 3
DC Power: 5.2V, 2500mA, 12.5W
Face & Body Material: Polycarbonate
Colors: White, Light Almond, Ivory, Black

2. Packaging

The Power2U outlet comes in a very simple yet effective package. The majority of the front face is dominated by the actual device and faceplate that you will see on your wall once you’ve installed the outlet and a bright red circle in the upper right-hand corner denoting the circuit amperage the outlet is rated for. Since the Power2U is available in four colors (White sample provided), you can easily choose the one that is right for your home. As always, verify whether the outlet you are replacing is connected to a 15A or 20A circuit in your breaker/fuse panel before purchasing to save yourself some headaches.

Power2U Packaging
Flipping the package over reveals the back of the device with the provided information and installation guide encased in clear plastic. Along with this is a small write-up laying out the Power2U outlet’s intentions to provide power and charging capability to up to four devices, even the more power hungry tablets and iDevices we may own.
Power2U Packaging Back
Staying with the back face of the packaging if you pay just a little bit of attention you will find the "easy open" lip in the top left corner. For anyone whom has ever tried to open anything packaged in a similar hard plastic vacuum sealed manner this is amazing. No knives or scissors needed, simply pull and your open. It is a feature I would like to see on pretty much everything packaged in this manner and it shows that Newer Technology was thinking about more than just their product.
Power2U easy open
Power2U opened
3. Installation

As a word of warning, never work on electrical circuits live. Find out which circuit in your house the device you want to replace is on and turn the breaker off or pull the fuse out before touching anything. That being said, installing the Power2U outlet is quite simple and Newer Technologies provides an installation guide with the product as well as links to their website where you can download a video installation guide and FAQ video if that is more your style.

Power2U installation
Regardless of your choice the outcome will be the same. Make sure your wire is stripped back at least one half inch and slide them under the correct terminal plate. Your white (neutral) wire will attach to the side with the silvered screws, your bare/green (ground) wire will attach to the terminal under the green hexagon screw and your black (hot) wire attaches to the side with the brass screws.
Power2U Side
Power2U Side
Power2U closeup
Power2U wires
Power2U Side
Power2U Side
After that you are essentially done. Secure the Power2U outlet back into the box on your wall and attach the face plate. When attaching the faceplate be mindful of the "Smart Power" latches on the sides of the USB ports so that they line up and snap into place, these switches are designed to only provide power to the USB port when the sliding door is open to be more energy efficient. You are now ready to enjoy both regular power and USB power from this outlet at any time.
Power2U USB Ports
4. Performance
Power2U Performance
As you would expect, the standard wall outlet portion of the Power2U works as intended providing the same output voltage as the old outlet I replaced it with. Nothing flashy and nothing unexpected which is just want we all want. It wouldn’t make much sense to replace a perfectly good outlet without retaining that functionality.

The real purpose of the Power2U outlet is to provide the ability to charge two USB devices while still functioning as a standard outlet and to that end Newer Technologies does deliver. The output wattage capability is equivalent to a standard Apple USB wall adapter meaning your iDevices will get the power that they require without the need to purchase any extra hardware. Because of the decision to innately charge power hungry Apple devices, the USB on the Power2U outlet actually provides the same output as you would find plugging your device into a USB 3.0 "Super Speed" port meaning faster charging for everything else.

The last thing to take a look at was the "Smart Power" switches meant to make the Power2U outlet energy efficient, turning off the USB ports when nothing is plugged in to them. This is done through shutters which act as guards for unused ports as well as a power switch and they did work as intended. With each USB port providing 12 watts of potential power, having the ability to shut it off easily is a great addition to save some money on energy costs.

5. Overall and Final Verdict

My overall thoughts on the Power2U AC/USB wall outlet are quite good. On the whole the installation is just as easy as any other wall outlet you would pick up at a hardware store. A word of warning though as the device is quite large as older and smaller device boxes will be unable to fit it. The written and video instructions provided by Newer Technology are simple and to the point, adequate enough to help anyone safely install the device which is great this to find. The simple and direct packaging is just icing on the cake and at no point did I ever feel inconvenienced or overwhelmed.

Power2U Overall
The USB ports function as intended and in reality the 15A version of the Power2U costs the same as a single Apple wall power adapter. In testing I enjoyed charging both my Nook and smartphone as well as running my computer and television without any issue which shows that the design does deliver everything advertised. Space saving would have been enough from a device like this but the ability to charge your devices at USB 3.0 speeds is an amazing edition even if it comes as a side effect of charging Apple based devices. The Newer Technology Power2U AC/USB wall outlet is, in my mind, almost an essential peripheral device in this age of wall-to-wall gadgets.
Power2U Final Verdict Lanoc Top Honors

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