I’m supposed to be reviewing the Practical Meter. And I’d love to, I really would. But it just kind of works. Sometimes a device or service comes along and either works or it doesn’t. This is one of those products. The Practical Meter works, and it works well. So instead, I’m going to tell you what the Practical Meter is so damn good at.
We’ve all been there – our phone is in the dreaded single-digits of battery charge and we know the end is nigh. You’ve got a USB and your laptop, but you’re going out for the night in an hour and need as much charge as you can get in that 60 minutes so your phone makes it past last call. Plug the USB into the laptop, then plug it into your phone, then feel the relief wash over you as your phone begins to charge. But not so fast kemosabe. You’re going to be seeing those single digit charge numbers for quite a while. What’s the deal with that? Despite letting it charge for the hour, you never break 10% charge, your phone dies at the bar, you loose your friends, wander home alone, and wind up in your bathtube missing a kidney. Like I said, we’ve all been there.
You could have avoided this fate, and can still save your one remaining kidney if you’ve got a Practical Meter. This handy little device offers a quick readout of how much power your device is actually getting as it charges. In our example, you’d soon see that the data cable you’re using to charge your phone with is throttling the power transfer and you’re never going to get anywhere with it. An even better use case is with portable solar panels while you’re camping or hunting zombies. Rig up the Practical Meter to the solar panels, then rotate the panels till you see the most amount of power being supplied to your preferred device. No more guessing or praying to the sun gods. Genius.
And that stupid data cable that doesn’t allow for fast charging? Well the company behind the meter, Power Practical, has thought of that. Included with the Practical Meter is their Fast Charge cable that not only provides the fastest charge times regardless of power source, but also comes packing three different device plugs (Micro USB, Mini USB, and the larger iPhone dock style). It’s like they’ve thought of everything.
I’ve tried all kinds of combinations of the Practical Meter, power sources, and the Fast Charge cable. All I can say is, they work. And work well. If you’ve got power problems with your devices, whether mobile charging or solar-powered fun, I cannot recommend the Practical Meter enough. It’s hard to review something that just plain works.