Nimble portable/wireless chargers review: Eco-friendly designs, but high prices for such low specs

Mophie is well known for the quality of its products and the high price attributed to them, so we were interested to know that some of their employees had separated to start a new company of ecological food accessories. Called Nimble. Taking into account that the consumer cut costs of recyclable packaging and focused on renewable materials, we were curious to see if Nimble could interrupt the state of the battery and the charger, a highly competitive market. Unfortunately, Nimble's specifications and prices can not beat the competition.

We reviewed Nimble's extensive battery collection and wireless charging accessories, a much more interesting topic now that Google has bequeathed pixels with Qi. Unfortunately, for all of us, we found that Nimble batteries have a higher price that was not backed by product performance. Although in most cases we were impressed by the style and general quality of construction, as well as the concept of reduced environmental impact, these batteries and wireless chargers are difficult to sell only in appearance

Reviewed by Richard Gao and Ryne Hager. [19659004] Batteries

Nimble offers portable batteries / chargers (a name I hate) in four sizes named for the number of additional days that the average phone provides. At $ 50- $ 100, they also have a pretty high price. With a simple 18W output via USB-C, Nimble batteries do not compare favorably with other major OEMs at the same price, or crowds of random Chinese brands on Amazon. Although I like the quality and the general aesthetics of the construction, I do not think that the Nimble batteries are worthwhile in the MSRP, although we do have an exclusive coupon ( DROID15 ) that offers you 15% additional discount on Nimble & # 39; s

Specif.

Capacity 10,000mAh 13,000mAh 20,000mAh 26,000mAh
Icon of Icon of […]
USB ports 1x type C, 2x type A [19659015] 1x type C, 3x type A 1x type C, 2x type A 1x type C, 3x Type A
Dimensions / Weight 2.5 "x 4.25" x 1 "(64 x 108 x 25 mm) / 0.56 lbs (255 g) 3 "x 4.25" x 1 "(76 x 108 x 25 mm) / 0.75 lbs (340 g) 2.5" x 7 "x 1" (64 x 177 x 25 mm) / 1.03 lbs (468 g) 3 "x 7.25" x 1 "(76 x 184 x 25 mm) / 1.38 lbs (624 g)
USB-C Output PD 3.0 (5V, 3A / 9V, 2.0A / 12V, 1.5A)
USB-A output 5V, 2.4A Max.
USB-A "Quick Charge" 5V, 2.4A / 9V, 2.0A / 12V, 1.5A
Input PD 3.0 (5V, 2.5A / 9V, 2.0A)

Design, hardware, contents of the box

All Nimble batteries, from

The product outline for Nimble can be an environmentally friendly reuse of materials, but does not seem to compromise the quality of construction of its products. The housing is made of aluminum and a semi-transparent dark plastic with metallic mottling with a soft touch finish. Nimble quickly points out that internal plastics are of plant origin, but no mention is made of recycled or natural materials when it comes to the body's TPE part. That's very bad, since I would have liked to see how a greener shell would have looked, since all the recycled plastic products that I used have a nice matte texture

Although the fit between the parts was not exactly Apple's precise It felt durable and of high quality, and I would not worry about it falling apart or being hit inside a bag, although you can remove the cover if you try.

Maybe I do not pull too hard (although it fits again strongly).

All batteries have their outputs and inputs aligned along a single edge, objectively the best battery design. I hate when one is on a different side. Although the numbers and positions of the ports vary (see the specifications table), they all have 2-3 Type A USB ports paired with a single USB Type C port for both charging and output, which reaches a maximum of 18W. A row of LED indicates the remaining capacity, with the upper one indicated by the output by type: green for standard, orange for USB-PD. A button at the top activates the LEDs to show you the remaining capacity, with a slightly annoying slow fill animation.

The other apparent feature of Nimble's trademark is a magnetic cable manager on the back end of each battery, but it is not. t executed very well The magnet included in it is quite weak, and the strap to hold the cables is too large. The whole magnetic assembly fell from my batteries almost constantly. While it's a good idea, execution is not enough. It would take a stronger magnet and a tighter strap to really work; As it is, it is not worth keeping the battery when you throw it in a bag: it will simply fall off.

The battery pack is made of 100% "waste paper", optimized for recycling. While I like the idea in the abstract and enjoy that apparently saves money to consumers, the packaging is not very durable. The batteries come in a molded cardboard cover, and they hit a little on their way to my door. In one of the larger batteries, the adhesive labels that kept the two halves closed had even broken. Nimble seems to be aware that it is a problem, since the larger battery comes in a more durable and stereotyped cardboard box. In any case, none of the batteries was damaged in any way during transportation.

All batteries, except the largest one, came with the same: a 1-inch USB-A to USB-C cable, a bag for Recycling old electronics, and a small product manual.

The largest battery (26,000mAh) comes with a small USB-C QC 3.0 18W charger and a longer cable (~ 3 inches) USB-A to USB-C. I find it a bit strange that the included charger is advertised as Qualcomm Quick Charge 3.0 when the repeated marketing approach in the input / output of the battery is USB Power Delivery.

I also had some reliability problems with the USB Type-C port on the bigger battery. After a while, I stopped liking all my USB Type C cables, and I had to be careful not to push it while it was charging or was prone to disconnecting. However, the other batteries did not have that problem.

Nimble batteries include a 12 month warranty, which is the minimum for batteries, in my opinion. Many original equipment manufacturers offer 12 to 18 month warranties with additional extensions after product registration, and for Nimble premium prices, they expected to keep their products for a longer period.

Metrics / Tests

We test the four batteries in our usual way, measuring watt-hours (more than [email protected] 5V / 2.4A), maximum input and maximum output in all types of ports:

Capacity 10,000mAh 13,000mAh 20,000mAh 26,0000 mAh
Maximum input V (USB-C) 8.9V 8.9V 8.9V ] 8.9V
Maximum input A (USB-C) 2A [19659014] 2.1A 2.3A 2A
Maximum input W (USB-C) 17.8W ] 18.7W 20.5W 17.8W
Maximum output V (USB-C) 11.6V 11.7V 11.6V 11.7V
Maximum output A (USB-C) 1.4A 1.4A 1.4 A 1.4A
Maximum output W (USB-C) 16.4W 16.4W 16.2 W 16.4W
Max. V output (USB-A) 4.8V 4.8V 4.8V 4.8V
Maximum output A (USB-A) 2.3A 2.3A [19659015] ] 2.3A 2.3A
Maximum output W (USB-A) 11W 11W 11W 11W
Watt hours on USB-A 30.2 [19659015]] 39.8 61 83.8

There is one important inconsistency that I would like to point out, and it is the USB-A ports that are not labeled as "Fast Charge". Although each battery had a similar output in the fast charging ports, the performance of the other USB-A port varied greatly, not only between the batteries but between different ports in the unit itself. Some of the ports can spit up to 2.4 A, while others can not exceed 1 A.

Not all non-fast charging USB-A ports have the same performance.

Batteries are charged at a constant constant of 9V of USB-PD, if they can get it, they will drop amperage over time. None of my phones seemed to be able to negotiate anything more than 5V on USB-C, but my MacBook Pro was able to reach 12V.

The QC 3.0 charger included with the largest battery reached a maximum of 8.8V and 1.9A. It also seems that the use of USB-PD was not negotiated according to my tester, although it could also be a user error (recently I got a new device specifically to test the compatibility of PD, and I am still acclimated).

Should I buy one?

Probably not. Nimble charge so too much for these batteries considering their maximum performance. 18W of power over USB-C is pretty basic: it's not even enough to charge a laptop while actively used, and almost all batteries of the last 5 years with an output of 2.4A come close to that. For less money, you can get other OEM batteries with USB-PD that reach 30W. For just a little more, you can get something like the 27,000mAh battery from RAVPower, which has a similar USB Type C output of ~ 15W and a 70W AC outlet (plus, it was actually more cheap than Nimble's biggest battery when we had a coupon for it).

If these Nimble batteries could reach 30W or 45W over USB-C, I would consider that they have a more reasonable price, but in the four battery sizes, there are cheaper options with the same or better specifications. Our exclusive 15% discount through coupon DROID15 makes it a bit better, but unless the design really appeals to you, other options always outperform these batteries in a comparison of pure specifications, and all at lower prices

With savings apparently presented by the use of recycled materials and minimalist and environmentally friendly packaging, Nimble's prices feel disingenuous. While I enjoyed the quality of construction, the overall aesthetics and the use of premium materials, such as aluminum and non-gross TPE (too many companies use soft-touch black rubber), Nimble's prices are not realistic. The additional features incorporated also fall flat: the magnetic cable management does not make sense, since the magnet is weak and the flap of the cables safe, and the animations of the super slow LED indicators were frustrating every time I had to check the levels of the battery.

Nimble would have to increase its production levels or lower prices to get my recommendation without reservations.

Stakeholders can buy batteries directly from Nimble, or through Amazon.

  • "3 day load" / 10,000mAh – $ 49.95
  • "5 day load" / 13,000mAh – $ 59.95
  • "8 day load" 20,000mAh – $ 69.95
  • "10-day load" 26,000mAh – $ 99.95

Wireless chargers

Nimble technically offers four wireless charging products: wireless pad, wireless dual pad, wireless dock and wireless travel kit. However, in reality there are only three charging pads; The Travel Kit simply contains the Wireless Pad and a larger double-port wall socket which, when placed together with the pad, forms a kind of box into which the charging cable can be placed. Of this quartet, there is none that I would recommend particularly unless it really excavates aesthetics.

Specifications

Product Wireless Pad Wireless Dual Pad Wireless Support Wireless Travel Kit
Price $ 39.95 [19659014] $ 49.95 $ 49.95 $ 59.95
Dimensions 4.41 "x 3.03" x 0.6 "(112 x 77 x 15 mm) 4.41" x 3.03 "x 0.6" x 112 "x 15mm) 5" x 3.03 "x 0.65" (127 x 77 x 17mm) 3 "x 7.25" x 1 "(76 x 184 x 25mm) / 1.38 lbs (624 g)
Input USB-C / QC 3.0 (5V, 2A / 9V, 2A)
Wireless output 5W, 7.5W, 10W (max.)
USB-A output 5V, 1A [19659142] Design, hardware, what in the box

As we have seen in batteries, Nimble places Trong as an emphasis on the design of its products, the same is true for its wireless chargers, everything is wrapped in fabric that, according to the company, is "made of organic hemp and recycled plastic bottles Cladas, and is built with bioplastics of vegetable origin derived from corn, sugarcane and other natural starch fibers. " The grip pads on the bottom are made of TPE soft to the touch, and they are also very special. It is assumed that the TPE requires little energy to produce, and Nimble infuses mica crystals in each pad to create a 1 of 1 dot design for each unit. The brand, specifications and regulatory marks are engraved on the bottom.

The wireless pad.

The ecological compatibility continues with the packaging, which is the same 100% waste paper cardboard that the batteries arrive at. I personally had no problem with the boxes that arrive damaged, although you are not the most premium feeling. Honestly, I felt like I was opening egg cartons, but hey, he can not complain about saving the world.

I'm a fan of what Nimble has done with the materials. The fabric offers a nice texture and the TPE then prevents the pad from moving. The rounded corners make a nice and perfect appearance. Everything feels solid and well assembled, which is often not the case for charging products, most of the wireless charging devices I have used are made of glossy black plastic. It looks good when it's new, but it scratches and scrapes quite easily. I do not see that happening with the fabric. Unfortunately, the wall socket is made of shiny plastic, but you will not see much of it anyway. At least it has the Nimble elephant logo on it.

The Dual Wireless Pad

The wireless pad, the wireless dual pad and the wireless holder have a USB-C input, as well as a small indicator light that shows when something is charging. All three are compatible with the 10-watt fast wireless charging for phones like Samsung's flagship from the Galaxy S6 onwards, and the 7.5-watt charge for iPhones from 8 / X onwards. Other phones will default to 5W. The wireless pad and the wireless support also have a USB-A output of 5V / 1A, but that is something that I do not imagine that many people use, given the low power it has. Maybe it could be good to charge your SmartWatch or Bluetooth headset, but not much more. It should also be borne in mind that the wireless dual pad can have a maximum of 10W on both pads. So, if you have two phones that support fast wireless charging, both will get stuck at 5W.

The wireless travel kit.

The two charging pads are self-explanatory, but the wireless travel kit and wireless support probably require some description. The travel kit consists of the wireless pad and a large wall brick ~ 1 inch high. Inside the brick, which is magnetically attached to the pad, there is a retractable connector, two USB-A ports with a combined output of up to 5V / 3A (one of which is QC3.0) and a compartment for attaching a charging cable. The idea is that you can carry your wireless charger when you are on the move. I suppose it's a good idea if you feel the need to use a wireless charger even when you're on vacation or on a business trip, but I doubt many people will.

It's not the safest.

At this point, I should probably mention that the wall charger part of the wireless travel kit came defective. I could not extract power from any of the outputs I tried for more than a second, so I replaced one of the very similar QC3.0 bricks included with the other Nimble wireless chargers for the test. Nimble has informed us that an updated version of the travel kit will be presented in the coming weeks, so it is currently out of stock.

Wireless support.

Wireless support is something I can not recommend. It has nothing to do with the charging functionality, since it is identical to the Wireless Pad, it is badly thought out. Nimble decided to make the support parts (the base and the support foot) retractable to function as a base and support. It's a good idea in theory, and one that Samsung has already done, but it just does not run well here. The base, or whatever you call the part where the bottom of the phone is located, is comically small. The support foot also seems quite weak. My test device was a Galaxy S7, a small phone by current standards, and was about to wobble. I can not imagine how a Pixel 3 XL or an iPhone XS Max would remain there with stability.

Like batteries, each wireless charging device, with the exception of the Wireless Travel Kit, came with a fast-charging USB-A 3.0 wall block (5V / 2.5A, 9V / 2A, 12V / 1.5A), a high-quality 1-meter USB-A USB-C charging cable in gray, a small plastic bag for recycling old technology and a small instruction booklet. The travel kit did not come with the QC3.0 brick, as the kit already includes a dual-port QC3.0 wall charger designed to fit with the wireless charging platform. The four offers are backed by 12-month guarantees.

Metrics / Testing

Since we are dealing with wireless chargers here, this is going to be less technical than for batteries. Our test device was a Galaxy S7, which is equipped with Samsung's 10W fast wireless charging technology. For reference, Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL also support a maximum of 10W through a wireless connection.

Using a power meter, we record the maximum inputs at about 8.9V / 1.1A, or ~ 10W, for the three Nimble wireless charger models. That means that the ratings are correct in the money. It is worth noting that the wireless Dual Pad can only handle a maximum of 10W on both coils, which means that the maximum speed with two phones is 5W each.

We also use Ampere to verify how the Nimble chargers are compared to a Samsung fast charging wireless holder. The maximum input that the application showed was 840 mA for the Nimble models, which was roughly on par with what the Samsung charger showed.

Should I buy one?

Probably not. As we saw with batteries, Nimble is charging higher than average prices given the specifications offered by its products. I am a big fan of the exterior of the fabric and the bases of TPE, as well as the environmental angle of most of the products. However, few will find that these design aspects are exclusive enough to guarantee a higher price.

The Wireless Pad, at $ 39.99, is almost twice as expensive as Amazon's competitors. The $ 49.99 wireless dual pad is not too bad, but this $ 38 double wireless charging pad not only supports 18W (9W on both coils with two phones charging), but also has an additional USB-A output in the charger. The $ 49.99 wireless support can not be recommended for the same monetary reasons, and that's not to mention the ease with which you can hit with a phone. Finally, the wireless travel kit does not make much sense to me as a product, and for $ 59.99 it is not well priced either.

As mentioned above, Nimble offers AP readers an exclusive discount of 15% with code DROID15 . That makes the prices a little tastier. If the Fabric / TPE structure really speaks to you, and I can not blame you if it does, feel free to choose between Wireless Pad or Wireless Dual Pad. Even with the coupon, I do not think the Wireless Stand is worth it. The same goes for the wireless travel kit, but that is a moot point since it is not currently for sale.

If you are interested in buying any of these chargers, the links to the Nimble and Amazon site are below. [19659114] Wireless pad

  • Wireless dual pad
  • Wireless support
    • Nimble – 15% discount with coupon code DROID15
  • Wireless travel kit
  • Add a Comment

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *