I used to think the best place to get USB car chargers was at Ross or TJ Maxx. That’s because once upon a time, USB meant limited charging power/speed, and so any USB charger would do the job. But nowadays devices can charge much more quickly, with the right hardware, and I’ve come to prefer a quality device that I don’t have to worry about frying my devices, or buying a new one every so often.
Nonda recently contacted me and asked if I’d like to review their ZUS car charger. I agreed and received one for free. I’m using affiliate links in this review.
What I Liked
To put it simply: it’s a great charger! It’s also a decent vehicle locator. It has the unique functionality of noticing when your car gets turned off, and sends a signal to the app on your phone via Bluetooth, to mark the spot. That way you can just open the app to find your car again afterward. Here’s what I liked about it:
- Looks like it fell off of a stealth jet.
- Can withstand extreme temperatures.
- Charges phones much more quickly than others I’ve used.
- Nice lighting effects.
- Often knows where I parked.
On the previous charger we had, if I had the screen on with Google Maps and the requisite GPS and cell data all going at once, it wouldn’t even charge the phone. I wouldn’t usually loose battery, but if it actually charged any, it was like 1% per hour. With the Nonda ZUS, I can have all that going on, and it still charges noticeably in short amounts of time. With the screen turned off and Maps not running the GPS, I get significant charges in a very short time, much like the manufacturer’s wall charger.
What I Didn’t Like
Here’s some things I didn’t like, or others may not like:
- Says I’m near my car, and stops guiding me to it, way too early (note: there was a recent app update I haven’t tested, that may improve this).
- Sometimes doesn’t seem to notice I parked the car, and so can’t help me find it.
- No USB-C plugs, but you can use a USB to USB-C cable (that’s what I’m doing).
- Price of $30 (I think it’s quite good, personally).
I think it’s well worth the price, even if you don’t use the vehicle location functionality. If you do use it, and if you’re on Android, you should be able to find your car via Google Now, or the ZUS app, about 90% of the time. It seems like Now only gets it about 20% of the time, and the ZUS grabs another 70%, but there were still times when both failed to recognize that I’d parked my car.
So if car location is important to you, and you need 100% parking detection, this is not for you. On the other hand, if you want a quality charger that charges fast, will last a long time, and looks awesome, then this is a great device and I highly recommend it for a price similar to what phone stores will charge you for an inferior car charger.