- Case is snug
- Charges at near standard rates
- Adds protection to your device
- Lack of color and design options
- Bundled Kits with stand, no stand alone case options
- Galaxy Note 3, S4 and S5 support
In a world where power matter most to users, having an easy to use system to charge up that device of yours is pretty important. As of late we have started seeing fast charging and quick charging. For the consumer they mean they same thing. Basically you can charge up compatible devices much quicker than before from a wall plug. While handy, it isn’t always the most useful function. On the other end of the spectrum you have wireless charging. Again, only a handful of devices have this function built-in. There are a number of cases and small accessories you can place behind your back cover to make your device Qi enabled, but still, not always as successful as many would like. Often times the charge rates are just too slow or it is cumbersome to find the “sweet” spot to place your device to charge. That is where Patriot Memory is stepping up to the plate to offer an alternative with the PatriotÂ FUEL iON Magnetic Wireless Charging systems.
Patriot Memory might be a name you know more so for their long-standing history in building RAM kits for PC and Macs along with their solid state drives, thumbs drives and external hard drives. They certainly aren’t a new company and we have had the pleasure of reviewing a number of their more mobile centric products over the last year or so. While a few mobile products like the Stellar Boost XTÂ stands out in my mind often, it is their reinvention of the wireless charging system that keeps pulling me in. In this review/overview we will take a closer looks at one of the newer additions to the line with theÂ FUEL iON Magnetic Wireless Charging system for the Galaxy S5. If you read the review of the kit for the Galaxy S4 then you sure to notice the differences in case design.
Before we get into things, I feel I should preface this with the fact that the charging system per device is no different from one another except for the case for the device that makes it all possible. The dock, the charge pad, the car kit and the external battery bank are all compatible with any device that sports the case. In short, if they make a case for your next device, you just need the case and not a whole new charging system. Currently they have cases/kits for the Note 3, Galaxy S4, Galaxy S5 and iPhone 5/5s. With cases in the works for the iPhone 6/6 plus and others.
The first aspect to the system in the case for your device. The case on the Galaxy S5 is drastically different from the case they started out with on the Galaxy S4. With the S5 they ditch the folio style flip cover and went with a standard shell style case that wraps the entire device. It still leaves you access to all your ports, like the USB port and headphone jack. It covers the buttons for power and volume, but doesn’t hinder their use.
The case has a slight raised edge around the screen to keep it elevated off of surfaces to help prevent scratching when dropped or when laid face down.
The case fits extremely well. it doesn’t offer any wiggle or give in the slightest. With the tight fit you also won’t notice any gaps that could expose the back of the device to external elements. The sides are rubberized and make it easy to grip while the back is a hard plastic for added durability.
The way the case fits makes me thing a tempered glass screen protector or other screen protector wouldn’t hinder its use as the edges just barely cover the edge of the device. Don’t let that fool you into thinking the phone could fall out at any given time, because it fits in extremely snug.
Once the case is applied you are all set to start charging. With the basic start-up kit you get the case for your respective device and the charging dock. The charging dock simply gets plugged into any current USB charging apparatus, say USB on a PC or a current wall plug you are already using. It places the device at a nice view-able angle that can let it sit vertically or horizontally simply by rotating the device. Since it is magnetic, you have no fear of the current charge being broken to readjust the device in any viewing mode you desire.
Being that it uses rare-earth magnets also makes connecting it to any of the charging devices stupid easy. All you have to do is get close and it sucks the device into place, every time, without fail. That leaves you able to put it back on the charger in the dark with minimal efforts. The whole kit is hasÂ built-in circuit protection against over voltage, over current, leakageÂ and comes with a 2-year warranty.
While I feel I shouldn’t need to say it, I will anyways. This system is strictly for charging. It WILL not pass data to and from your PC. That is still an operation that needs to be handle via a USB cable or apps like AirDroid.
Something else new
Patriot has expanded the offering beyond just the traditional car dock, desk top bock and charging pad. They now offer external battery banks that use the same charging techniques. On one side is a the charge pad ring while the other side offers up the Â fiveÂ pin charging connector.
The uses for the kits are pretty wide open. If you go all out you are set for the nightstand, the car and the office without needing multiple or having to open the devices port all the time. It really saves the strain on the port and potential port failure. The magnets are strong enough to hold the device in place, but don’t seem to interfere with any compass or GPS function. At least none that I experienced during use. We set it up to open up a bedside clock when docked with much of the use being after a long day out and about.
Overall, it is a nice addition to your life where easy access to power in various locations is important without the need for fiddling with cables and cords. All of this gets even more beneficial when you consider you are also getting a solid slim case to protect your dive at the same time. While the case isn’t a Otterbox brick, it still offers protection from everyday bumps and drops. The device used was dropped a handful of times getting out of vehicles without issues. If hardcore protection is what you need, then this case, and sub-sequentially the whole system, won’t work out in your favor. If you are after a more minimalistic look with wireless charging freedom, then you should take a closer look at the kits from Patriot.
I do my very best to dig out any cons or concerns with a product, the only thing I ran into during use of the case was the fitting the edges near the power button to be irritating. When it was first put on it had a tendency to apply to much pressure to the power button and prompt for turning it off. A little readjustment to that edge, as well as just using for a few days to sort of stretch/fit the case to the device, alleviated that issue.
The basic kit comes with the case, the charging dock and a micro USB cable. You need to provide your own charging source, like a charging block or USB port on your PC. Most of us have a dozen or so of them lying around anyways. The starter kit, on the Galaxy S5, will set you back $79.99 currently on Amazon with the Note 3 being $49.99 and the Galaxy S4 also being $49.99. Additional accessories will set you back a variety of prices ranging from $29.99 to $49.99.
My hopes for the future is that Patriot will continue to innovate their designs and bring more cases, or case alternatives, to multiple devices outside the primary Samsung and iPhone range. It is still early on in the product with this really only being the start to the second year they have been offered. They have great potential. Once they can offer the starter kits and the stand alone cases in a variety of colors and designs, is when I think they will widely appeal to more users. As they sit now, they are nice, look good and do the job they are designed for quite well.
Hit the link into Amazon now and take a look. You can choose from the various case kits in the same location. You can also navigate to the FUEL iON homepage at Patriotmemory.com as well for a few additional products like a charging cable and the battery bank you saw above.