The time has finally come to say goodbye to that cumbersome tangle of charging cables in your desk. Okay, maybe don’t throw them out just yet. But the PWRBOARD will make sure you at least find yourself digging into that mess less often.
The PWRBOARD, which is making its debut this week at CES 2022, is a DIY portable charging station that uses just one wall outlet for as many devices as you can fit atop its pegboard-like surface. It’s basically a motherboard for chargers. Individual modules allow different battery types to adapt to the board’s special connectors.
The idea itself is impressive — its reality more so, even. PWRBOARD’s individual modules allow the board to be compatible with just about any kind of battery you can think of. Everything from your DSLR to your rechargeable AAs to your GoPro. Soon the company plans to release open-source module development kits, too.
Build your own charging station — The PWRBOARD is available in two sizes, to start, a 23-inch model and a 16.50-inch “mini.” If you’re really invested, though, PWRBOARD will also build a custom base to your specifications.
Where PWRBOARD gets really customizable is in the modules you choose to go along with the base. This will largely depend upon the type and number of batteries you’re looking to use with it. You’ll need a dedicated module for each battery you’d like to charge; each runs for about $15.
Speaking of prices: the mini board will run you around $250, while the larger version is about $100 more. Add to that five or so modules and you’re looking at close to $500 for a charging array. Handy but not exactly accessible.
Traveling? Maybe not so much — There are at least a handful of situations in which we’d find the PWRBOARD useful. In a garage workshop, for example, with a module for each power tool and a few for general battery use. Or perhaps at an office.
The company is trying to push the board as a travel option, though, which seems… a bit of a stretch. Packing up the board itself doesn’t seem too difficult, but what about all the modules? And then you have to find somewhere to set it up, too. Throwing a bunch of chargers in a bag is probably easier.
Between the cost and the potentially endless number of modules, the PWRBOARD certainly isn’t for everyone. Having to buy a separate module for each type of battery almost renders the board’s convenience factor moot.
If you do find yourself with an inkling of interest, you can reserve a PWRBOARD for just $1. The company plans to run a Kickstarter sometime early this year with more updates on the project’s progress.