Cell phones and tablets are an absolute must in our daily lives for both work and personal use. Work truck fleet drivers often use their devices as navigation systems, to log information, to make/receive calls, image capturing, etc. Our device batteries wear down pretty quickly with continued use, and many of us combat the inevitable through car chargers and battery packs. We likely use the charging cables purchased specifically for our vehicles each time we step in the cab—this leads to a frayed cord, switching between your iPhone cable and your coworker’s Android cable, and the constant wear and tear of each. If you find yourself having to replace your truck’s charging cable several times a year, maybe it’s time for an upgrade.
Natural problem solver Cliff Henthorn knew the charger struggle. He broke two chargers on one trip and decided enough was enough. He looked at different chargers on the market, took all their best qualities, and created Cords of Steel. Cliff let me try his invention, and I’ve got to say, I don’t see myself spending another $15 on a frail charging cable within several months.
WHAT IS IT?
Cords of Steel is a two-in-one Apple lightning and micro USB charger. Yes, you read that right. It charges both Apple products and micro USB-charged devices in one cord. This charging cord is meant for those who are tough on their chargers. The nearly 6-ft-long charging cables are protected with a rubber coating. The rubber coating is surrounded by flexible, coiled stainless steel. The alloy charging heads also contribute to toughness and strength.
Not only is this a tough charging cable, it’s also pretty smart. Normal chargers plug straight into phones, therefore the cord bends significantly when the phone is placed upright. This contributes to the fraying of cords. Cords of Steel’s charging head features a right angle. When phones are placed upright, the Cords of Steel charger assumes its natural position. Another convenient aspect to this charger is that it plugs into USB ports and device charging ports in both directions and works with most device cases including Otterbox and Lifeproof.
I TRIED IT
Two of my coworkers and I gave these chargers a go. We all appreciated the fact that they plug into charging ports and USB ports in either direction. That common, almost constant annoyance is completely erased with this charger. I love that the charger is nearly 6-ft-long and can charge my iPhone, my Bluetooth auxiliary connector, and my power bank with one cord. One thing to pay attention to, however, is that the stainless-steel cord can get hot when sitting in the sun. This isn’t likely to damage its charging capabilities, but it might hurt bare skin. To allow flexibility, the stainless-steel is coiled around the cable, but this also causes a risk of being pinched when retracting from a stretch, so be mindful of that, as well.
This cord really is tough. We dropped a 20-lb weight on it—in the middle of the cord and both ends—and the cord STILL charged my phone. Though I don’t expect fleet drivers to drop dumbbells on their chargers, this charger is definitely tough enough to endure the many ways a charger could get damaged when used in work trucks. And, this charger is especially helpful for fleet drivers who use devices on the job because the driver can charge his iPhone then use the same cord to charge his tablet on the way to his next job.
The fact that these chargers are durable really contributes to money saved from buying $15 cords every other month. Cliff told me he sold a Cords of Steel to a police in Fort Worth, Texas, and now the City of Fort Worth wants to buy a charger for each vehicle in its 1,000-vehilce fleet—saving hundreds of dollars in chargers per year. Cords of Steel come with a limited lifetime warranty, further contributing to potential savings. These chargers are convenient, durable, have a sleek look, and are sure to impress. Purchase them for $25 at www.cordsofsteel.com.
Join me next month as I review Brush Hero—a vehicle detailing brush that makes for a less abrasive, easier clean. Send your questions and comments about the product to us via Twitter, Facebook, or email!