Why It’s Hard To Find A Good Charger
The biggest issue to sourcing a really good charger unit is, surprisingly, cost. It sounds like the kind of device where you should be able to get them by the bucketload on the cheap – and this is the case for some of the throwaway/inexpensive product that can be found on auction websites or similar. But we found out it’s not actually like that.
Let’s say you wanted to design a product that comes fully compliant with European RoHS (Restriction on Hazardous Substances) requirements. This can be done but bumps up the cost a little. Then we consider that it makes no sense to have to use a screwdriver to move a button to choose the right voltage for a notebook – that just sounds like trouble and it’s easy to accidentally set a wrong setting which can cause a charger (or worse, a computer!) to malfunction. Automatic voltage switching can be built in, but of course this makes things a little more expensive.
Add in the cost of having an LCD screen to display the voltage so that you know the unit is functioning correctly, a built-in USB port with some really cool phone chargers as well so that the one charger can basically charge two devices at once (something we wanted to do so that people didn’t need to bring two chargers to work or on holiday, we think this is supremely useful!), and custom-designing 30 different laptop heads to try and ensure almost every popular computer on the planet can be catered for. Finally, also making sure the charger supports up to 120W (most support only up to 90W which excludes more powerful computers such as gaming laptops) to expand the range that it can support.