There are a lot of different charge cables out there and it's hard for any one to stand out above the rest. But the inCharge 6 tries to do that by being a 6-in-1 charge and sync cable that you can attach to your keys or slip into your pocket.
First off, what are the six combinations? They're as follows:
- USB to USB-C
- USB to Lightning
- USB to microUSB
- USB-C to USB-C
- USB-C to Lightning
- USB-C to microUSB
Out of the box, here are some initial impressions.
First, the box is a bit raggedy. Since it goes in the bin this isn't much of a problem, but it does make the product feel a bit cheap and nasty.
Then there's the laser printing on the metal. It's pretty rough. I don't really care, but if you are someone who likes things that look nice, this might be an issue.
The Lightning connector is weird because at the tip is a hole that allows it to be used as a microUSB connector. This means that the Lightning connector is not an Apple part and that gives me concerns about how long it might last.
The microUSB in the end of the Lightning cable makes me feel uncomfortable. Maybe in part this is because I'm not much of a microUSB fan, partly down to there being a right way and a wrong way to plug it in, and partly down to it being quite stiff to use. Overall, it works, but the fact that I can connect it wrongly is worrying, doubly so that it isn't clear which is the right way.
All the different combinations work perfectly. I did feel that switching the connectors from USB-C to the Lightning and USB-A to USB-C was a little stiff initially, but that worked its way out.
The magnet that keeps the cable connectors clamped together is strong enough to do the job but not so strong that it gets in the way of use.
The cable joining the two ends is fabric covered. Seems tough but it's too early to tell.
However, for the $13 that this cost me over on Indigogo, I can't say that I'm disappointed. It does what it said it would do, and seems perfect for people who have a devices that charge using a variety of different connectors. The Lightning/microUSB end feels a bit gimmicky to me and I'd have preferred a genuine Lightning connector there. I've come across a lot of third party ones that are brittle and break in use.
I'll continue testing it and post a follow up in a few weeks.