September 17, 2014

[UPDATED with winner!!] Review and giveaway: Droidax EzyCharge GS3 wireless charging system

20130413_141835

20130413_141835

Update: The AndroidGuys team would like to thank everyone that participated via Facebook. The giveaway ended at midnight, and a winner was selected at random (using random.org to generate a number). So without further ado, the winner of the Droidax EzyCharge wireless charging kit is…..

Jamarius Johnson! Congratulations to the winner, we will be in touch to ship your prize out to you. Again, thanks to everyone that participated, and keep it locked here on AndroidGuys for future giveaways!

Wireless charging is becoming more and more of a standard in the wireless industry. We’re seeing more devices released with wireless charging built in, like the Nexus 4 and Samsung Galaxy S4. Overall, wireless charging is a great concept. You set your phone on a pad, and there are no cables or annoying ports to deal with. It’s simple, easy, and saves time. Droidax is bringing this great innovation to users with their line of wireless charging pads and receivers. I had the chance to review the EzyCharge wireless charging kit for the Galaxy S3, and now AndroidGuys is giving one away to a lucky reader! But we’ll get into that a little later. First, let’s take a look at the pros and cons of the Droidax wireless charger.

IMG_20130413_140856

Before doing any research or seeing the kit in person, I had expected it to include some kind of small apparatus that goes behind the battery of the GS3. I’ve seen this implemented before, and it seems like a fairly logical wireless charging solution. But when I received the wireless charging kit, I found that the “receiver” is actually a case that the GS3 fits into. Droidax offers it in two colors, deep blue and pearl white (I received the deep blue color). The case itself is actually somewhat nice. The back is a soft-touch plastic, and oddly enough reminded me of the battery door on the G1 (if anyone remembers back that far). It’s comfortable to hold in the hand, and has decent build quality. It’s not going to win many awards for expensive materials, but it definitely doesn’t feel cheap.

IMG_20130413_140819It does add a fair bit of heft to the GS3, but that’s a bit of a trade-off for the wireless charging capabilities. Being that the device plugs into the microUSB port on the case, it also adds some length. I expected this to make holding the device awkward, but the difference is actually not that noticeable. I was happy to see that Droidax left the power and volume buttons uncovered. After using other cases with hard-to-press button covers, it was nice to use one that just left them alone.

IMG_20130413_141256The cutouts for the camera and speaker are quite wide, and were clearly well thought out. Since the GS3 plugs into the case, there’s a microUSB port at the bottom of it, just in case you need some old fashioned charging. The back of the case sports a power button, which serves to turn on the power pack, along with four blue indicator lights. These are used to show how full (or empty) the battery pack is.

IMG_20130413_140803Speaking of the battery pack, I found it to be a dysfunctional advantage. The receiver houses a 2,300 mAh battery, which is actually slightly larger than the stock 2,100 mAh battery in the GS3 itself. It’s great that Droidax decided to include this extra oomph along with wireless charging, but it would’ve been even greater if it worked properly. Upon turning on the power pack (by holding the power button for a few seconds), it instantly starts feeding power to the GS3. This is a fantastic tool to have when you’re out and about, but there’s one major downfall. One particular day, I drained the battery on my device faster than usual. I used the opportunity to test out the speed of the power pack.

I turned it on, and slipped my phone back into my pocket (yes, even the heavy, long case is pocketable). After a few minutes, I noticed that my leg felt rather hot. I pulled the phone out of my pocket to discover that the case was overheating. And not the normal, “this is a little warm” overheating. I could’ve cooked a pound of bacon on the back of this thing. It cooled down after I removed my GS3 from the case and turned the power pack off. Upon further testing, I found that this wasn’t a one-time incident. For some reason, the battery pack does not like to be turned on at all. I haven’t found many similar reports from other users, so I may have had a faulty production unit. At any rate, I didn’t get to take advantage of the added 2,300 mAh. Bummer.

IMG_20130413_141109Moving on, the kit also includes a wireless charging pad (obviously). The pad is the same deep blue color as the receiver, and sports a white section at the top that lights up when the receiver is recognized. I found this to be very helpful, as I could clearly see when the device was being charged, and when I had to adjust its position. It’s also worth mentioning that the EzyCharge system is rather picky about the orientation and position of the receiver on the wireless pad. Sadly, it’s not just a “set it and forget it” charger. The bottom of the receiver must be placed close to the top or bottom of the pad, or it won’t get any juice. This was irritating at first, but I soon got into the habit of placing the phone in the right place on the first try.

As far as actual charging strength goes, the Droidax system gave me great results. It charged my GS3 as fast, if not slightly faster than a conventional microUSB charger. Since I typically charge my phone every night, I had no problem going from under 15% to fully charged by the time I woke up. For most people, the Droidax system will give you the same speed as your everyday corded charger.

IMG_20130413_141131

After a considerable about of usage, testing, and overheating, the Droidax wireless charging system is both convenient and practical. Despite the fact that the battery pack more or less can’t be used, it’s still a great wireless charger. On top of that, I wouldn’t mind if Droidax made a case, sans charging capabilities, with the same materials that this one has. It fits well in the hand and just feels nice.

What We Liked

  • Convenience and usefulness of wireless charging are practically priceless
  • Provides great charging speed, comparable to corded chargers
  • Case itself has good build quality
  • External battery pack on top of wireless charging is a great concept

Room for Improvement

  • Major flaw with overheating when using the battery pack 
  • Added heft to the device might be a trade-off for some
  • Price tag is also a possible deal-breaker

Where to Buy

You can grab the EzyCharge system direct from Droidax. The receiver retails for around $80, while the wireless pad will set you back $60. With taxes and shipping, you’re looking at about 150 bucks for this system. Whether that price is worth it will mostly be a personal preference issue. If wireless charging on your GS3 is something you absolutely must have, the Droidax system is a no-brainer.

How Do You Enter to Win?

On to the fun part! We’ve got an extra Droidax wireless charging system to give away to one of you awesome readers. All you have to do is jump over to Facebook, be sure to “like” AndroidGuys (if you haven’t already), and then hit that “like” button again on this status. Once we’ve passed the deadline, someone will be chosen at random to win the wireless charging system.

The giveaway will be open until next Monday, May 6th, at 12:00 a.m. CST. That gives you a week to get those likes in! Unfortunately, this contest will be limited to U.S. readers. With that being said, let the giveaway begin!

If you have any questions about the Droidax EzyCharge system, feel free to drop a comment below and I’ll do my best to answer them!

Deals, Discounts, Freebies, and More! Click here to save today!