Review: Gecko Gear Gecko Go In-Car Charger for iPod + iPhone 3G
Though it's not exactly a breakthrough product or design, Gecko Gear's new Gecko Go ($20) is an iPod- and iPhone-certified car charger with a uniquely shaped detachable USB cable and a clean-looking charging bulb, reminiscent of XtremeMac's InCharge Auto -- once again, chrome and black are the visual theme here, though Gecko has picked matte rather than glossy black for its material. No audio-out is included in Gecko Go; you'll need to connect to your iPod or iPhone with a separate headphone port cable.
While we’ve opted to give Gecko Go only a short review due to its simplicity, our overall impressions are positive. The charging bulb has a glowing light ring like the ones on Griffin and Monster chargers, here illuminating in green or red depending on whether a device is connected and refueling, a process that went flawlessly in a number of tests with iPhones and recent iPods alike. Go didn’t trigger the iPhone’s notorious nag screen, and provided power as expected; a self-resetting circuit breaker is integrated to prevent the iPod or iPhone from being hit with a power spike.
The only oddity of the design is the aforementioned USB cable. While the iPod and iPhone end is quite accessory compatible, the USB plug at the other end has clearly been designed mostly to connect to this particular charger, possessing a molded circular plastic shape rather than the rounded box-like shape of typical USB connectors. Consequently, you may find that the molded plastic encroaches a little on whatever’s adjacent to the USB port on other devices; similar chargers from other companies don’t have this sort of issue.
Overall, Gecko Go is pretty much what we’d expect from a $20 iPod and iPhone charger these days: a simple, compatible, and attractive but not stunning little power source. It does what it’s supposed to do, but users with mounting, audio-out, and related needs may find their dollars better spent on the more sophisticated chargers we’ve reviewed.