The Duracell Powermat 24-Hour Power System for iPhone 4/4S, replaces Powermat products that have been around the last few years. The name is slightly inaccurate though. While there are charging cases for only the iPhone 4/4S and the Samsung Galaxy S III phones, it includes a portable charger that can attach to a host of devices via a mini USB cable. The rechargeable portable battery that comes with the package can also be bought on its own (*Est. $50). It stores only 1,850mA. Despite its simplicity of use, sleek design, and its high capabilities, there are plenty of other good, and cheaper, portable USB chargers, as one reviewer notes.
Dead simple. PCMag.com reviewer Eugene Kim says, "You can simply toss the battery onto the Powermat and it will usually find its own way." Magnets are the magic allowing this kind of simplicity. The cases fit loosely, and users complain of having to remove their preferred cases first, not always an easy affair. Partly because it's so easy to operate, the portable battery is a hit with users and experts alike. Parked along the battery's sides are two cables. One is a mini USB jack and the other an Apple 30-pin connection. When needed, they connect a compatible device to the battery. Kim says, "Setup is fairly straightforward." The portable battery can charge itself and another device simultaneously, while an automatic shut-off feature stops charging when devices are fully charged.
Small, light and sleekly designed, says one expert. Another says it has a futuristic appearance. Only the portable battery charges independently, the mat itself does not charge. At 2.75-inches square and 0.68-inches thick, and weighing less than 3 ounces, the portable charger is very useful. The charging cases are another matter. One reviewer says they are "very slick" and "fairly flimsy," and while the iPhones are in their charging cases, they lose the ability to connect to Apple devices. Kim describes "a somewhat obnoxiously loud chirp" whenever a device is placed onto or taken off of the mat.
Highly capable. The "Duracell 24-Hour Power System delivers the same wireless charging capability of the original Powermat," says Kim. However, he misses the USB port built into older Powermat models - this one has none. In his charging tests of the 1850mA portable battery, Kim says, it "added about 4 hours of talk time to an iPhone 4S." Other reviewers achieve similar results and say the battery will give most devices one solid charge. Expert tests confirm that the Powermat will perform as advertised, but it is not appreciably faster or slower than when charging a device directly through its own power source.
Review Quality: Very Good The "futuristic" Powermat "seems more novel than truly convenient," says PCMag.com's Eugene Kim. He likes almost everything about it, but he does have some quibbles, especially with the fit of the iPhone 4/4S case and a chirping sound he finds particularly obnoxious.
Review: Duracell 24-Hour Power System, Eugene Kim, June 26, 2012
Review Credibility: Very Good The anonymous reviewer in this video points out how handy the Powermat could be for elderly or disabled people. He likes the "nice sleek appearance," but since much of its usefulness is in the portable charger, he says it seems a very pricey device for an item that is "more of a convenience than a necessity."
Review: Duracell Powermat 24-Hour Power System for iPhone and iPhone 4S, "TheEngineeringFamily", July 28, 2012
Review Credibility: Good "This is a small, cute system," says "Greg," a TrulyNet.com reviewer. He likes the "clean" design and says it's a "solid package." However, he advises that inductive charging technology is "still in the infant phase."
Review: Duracell Powermat: 24-Hour iPhone Power Solution, "Greg", Oct. 26, 2012
Review Credibility: Fair Arik Hesseldahl of AllThingsD.com wrote about Powermat when it was a startup in 2007. He says Powermat's vision was big then and still is. Duracell has since taken in Powermat, discarded all old models and released a new one. Hesseldahl says it's being branded as the Duracell Powermat 24-Hour Power System, "though the schtick is pretty much the same."
Review: Powermat Is Back with a New Charger and a Bigger Vision, Arik Hesseldahl, June 11, 2012
Review Credibility: Fair Sarah Silbert meets with Duracell Powermat CEO Ron Rabinowitz as he demonstrates the new Powermat 24-Hour Charging System. He also talks about partnerships to install Powermat systems in prominent New York City locations. In the video, he gives an insider's look at how the system works.
Review: Duracell Powermat announces 24-Hour Power System, We Go Hands-on (video), Sarah Silbert, June 11, 2012
Review Credibility: Fair About 80 Amazon.com customers write reviews of the Powermat. Although it gets an overall rating of 4 stars out of 5, it has serious detractors. The most common complaint is about the iPhone 4/4S charging case, which is described as "too slippery," "flimsy" and "incompatible with other Apple Dock connectors."
Review: Duracell 24-Hour Power System, Contributors to Amazon.com, As of February 2013