HooToo TripMate Elite Review
Kalvin Martinez / Sep 15th, 2014 No Comments
The rise of smartphone and tablet use has created a huge demand for products that make these devices work better, particularly in respects to battery life and WiFi access. HooToo has been designing small electronics and accessories catering to this market since 2008.
The TripMate Elite is the latest in the TripMate line of travel routers from HooToo. It retains the travel router, personal cloud and portable battery functionality of the original TripMate, but adds the handiness of a dual USB charger.
With smartphone battery life becoming increasingly spare, it functions exceedingly well as a portable battery charger for everyday use. The TripMate Elite is a useful travel device, solving many of the problems people face when away from home.
The Black Box
The TripMate Elite features a slick build with a glossy black plastic shell. The device only weighs 7.15 oz and measures 3.15-by-3.15-by-1.02-inches. It has a 1.0A and 2.1A USB charging port for respective devices, 2.4GHz 802.11b/g/n WiFi network for wireless functions, and 6000mAh battery capacity
Packed with a cloth pouch and micro-USB cable, the TripMate Elite gives users the basics to get started. Unfortunately, the cloth pouch doesn’t have enough room for the USB cable and the device, making it necessary to shove the USB cable into the pouch when taking it on the go.
USB and Ethernet ports are recessed well into the device and have a sturdy build quality. USB cables and Ethernet jacks plug into and eject easily. A power button indicates the battery level with a quick push, and holding it downs turns on the wireless functions of the device.
Indented ridges on the edges of the device give it a good feel in your hand. Prongs for the wall plug easily flip down for use and flip up to take the device on the go.
The TripMate Elite has a great design and fits neatly in the hand, but it is not as portable as it could be. It is a perfect device to throw into a bag, but it can be cumbersome to put the TripMate Elite and the necessary USB cable into a pocket.
But First, Let Me Charge My Phone and Share These Files
Nothing is more annoying than having your phone die on you while you’re out and won’t be near a charger for hours. The TripMate Elite’s portable battery charger is a perfect way to combat this. When charging devices, the TripMate Elite gives a solid, lasting charge to a smart phone in a relatively short time.
Leaving your phone plugged into the TripMate Elite for around 30 minutes can get you another few hours of phone use. During our testing, the device was able to fully charge a Samsung Galaxy S3 in only about an hour. Additionally, the TripMate Elite holds a charge so it can be used for several days, even when charging a single phone multiple times in that period (this changes depending on how heavy useage is).
Tablets and other portable electronics using the 2.1A USB port take longer to charge, but the TripMate Elite still charges the devices relatively quickly. Regardless if you use it as a dual USB charger plugged into an electrical socket or as a portable charger, the TripMate Elite can comfortably charge a tablet and smartphone (or two smartphones) with ease. It is an extremely handy device to use for everyday needs or as an all-in-one charging solution when traveling.
The dual USB charger and portable battery are perfect for the everyday consumer, but more tech savvy users will take advantage of its wireless functions. Turning a hardwired connection into a wireless connection or extending a wireless connection in bridge mode is easy. Simply follow some basic instructions and plug in an Ethernet cable, and you will be browsing the Internet or transferring files in no time.
USB ports can be used to plug in a USB flash drive or external hard drive, and the TripMate Elite can turn into its own personal cloud server by holding down the power button until the LAN turns on and downloading the HooToo TripMate app on your tablet or smartphone.
It is a nice function for business purposes, but can be used for more practical consumer needs by transferring extra music, videos or pictures between portable drives and your portable devices. Files transfer fast, so it is a snap to download and upload files.
HooToo’s TripMate Elite retails for $89.99, but can be easily found for around $59.99 on Amazon or Newegg. Even at the full retail price, the TripMate Elite offers a good value compared to other portable battery chargers on the market, which is the most immediately useful and potent function of the device. Its other functions as a travel router, personal cloud and dual USB device only add to the TripMate Elite’s value.
tags: hardware , HooToo , Portable Battery , review , Travel Router , TripMate , TripMate Elite , TripMate Elite Review