One of the biggest buzzword phrases in technology surrounding smartphones in recent years is “wireless charging.” For those who don’t know, this is a way to power up your device without having to actually plug it into a cable and wall outlet. Instead, you use an inductive charging system — typically in the form of a special case and a charging pad — that allows you to simply place your Android phone or iPhone onto it and automatically starts recharging the gadget. It’s quick, simple, and easy.
As a bit of a tech nerd, I’ve followed the wireless charging scene with some interest, but always had two issues with the technology. First, I never thought it was all that hard to plug a cable into my phone to charge it up in the first place, so I thought that wireless charging was largely a solution that was looking for a problem. My other hesitation with the technology is that it isn’t really “wireless” per se, it just shifts the cables to other devices — in this case, the charging pad — and adds another layer of tech in the form of a charging case or built-in inductive chargers. To me, wireless charging wasn’t something that I saw as all that useful or innovative. Wake me up when true wireless charging hits and my iPhone automatically charges from anywhere in the house at all times.
But, recently I’ve had the chance to test out the Stacked Wireless Magnetic Charging Kit, and I have to say that I’ve come around on the technology quite a bit. It definitely is convenient to use and offers quite a bit of flexibility, even for travelers. And while I still want a more advanced wireless charging system for my future gadgets, the Stacked system is definitely something I’ve come to appreciate in a very short time. Well… at least mostly.
One of the things that makes the Stacked system so helpful is that it is modular, allowing you to use it in a variety of places, in a variety of ways, with the help of a few accessories. The base Stacked product includes the 360º Speed Case, which fits over your iPhone 6/6S or 6/6s Plus (a version for the iPhone 7 is coming). The case itself fits snugly on your device, and while it doesn’t add much in the way of bulk, there is definitely more heft to it. The case doesn’t weigh an awful lot (less than a once), but you’ll definitely know that you’ve added it to your phone once it’s in place.
Like most iPhone cases, the incipio iphone case added a nice layer of protection to your smartphone, which some of us have a tendency to drop on hard surfaces from time to time. With this case in place, however, you’ll find that your fragile device is much better at surviving those little mishaps. The back of the Speed Case also has a magnet embedded in it which allows it to attach to the Stacked chargers, which we’ll talk about shortly.
Priced at $39.99, the 360º Speed Case isn’t especially expensive when compared to other cases, but on its own, it doesn’t really do much other than help protect your phone from harm. To truly get the benefits of the system, you really need to purchase a Stacked bundle, which include a couple of options for wirelessly charging your iPhone. Without the chargers, there isn’t much reason to own the Speed Case on its own. But with a charger in the mix, things get much more interesting.
The Stacked bundle comes with the case of course, as well as a battery pack and a standard charger that plugs directly into the wall. Both the battery pack and the charger have magnets that have an opposite polarity of the one found on the case. That means that when you place your phone on either charger, it’ll slide into place with a satisfying click, and within a few seconds begin charging.
The wall charger is small and comes with a fold-out power plug. This is meant to be plugged directly into a standard AC outlet for convenient charging at all times. It holds the phone firmly in place, and provides a nice steady charge, getting your iPhone back up to 100% as quickly and efficiently as the charger that came with the mobile device. The Stacked charger even has a standard USB port built into the side, allowing you to charge another device at the same time. This makes it a handy option to have with you when you travel as well.
The Stacked battery pack comes equipped with a 2000 mAh rechargeable lithium-ion battery of its own. This is enough to fully charge your iPhone once, with just a little power left over for later. It also features two USB ports, one micro-port for charging the battery pack itself, and another standard USB for charging other devices. The pack is thin, lightweight, and easy to take with you anywhere. It also has the magnetic connection system integrated right into its case as well. In fact, it has two magnetic ports, one for connecting to the Speed Case, and another for attaching a second battery pack. In this way, you can actually daisy-chain multiple battery packs for a convenient way to carry extra power with you.
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