Kero is the little cable company that could. Having found initial success with two Kickstarter campaigns, this Chicago-based company is churning out cable accessories that promise to clear your desk of cable clutter. The Kero Nomad Cable ($25) is a 3” Apple certified lightning cable designed to fit conveniently on your keychain.
We rarely go anywhere without our keys, and the idea of having a Lightning cable always on hand is an enticing idea. There are other Lightning cables designed for keychains that we’ve seen in the past — the Bluelounge Kii Lightning Cable is a uniquely designed connector for a keyring, with a high price tag. By comparison, the Kero Nomad Cable is a simpler design with questionable execution.
The Kero Nomad Cable’s biggest selling point is also its biggest shortcoming, as the stubby 3” cable doesn’t offer much opportunity to move the phone while plugged in. While other cables are longer, they still allow you to use the device. Being so short, the Kero Nomad Cable slightly lifted our iPhone test unit from the surface of a table. Another design element that immediately stood out was that the USB connector was not flush with our office MacBook Pro, and slightly raised against the edge of the laptop. However, not all iOS users are also Mac users, so this will vary between laptop brands. Then there’s the fact that the Lightning plug isn’t protected at all, a strange decision that Bluelounge wisely worked around.
Nomad Cable’s cap does efficiently secure the cable to the keyring. After walking around with the Nomad Cable attached to our keyring, at no time did it fall off or get tangled in a mess of keys and garage door openers. A situation could present itself where the accessory is dislodged from the cap; in that case, your cable could be lost.
Apart from laptop users, we find it hard to imagine why most people would need Nomad Cable. It can’t be used practically with a desktop computer, and most vehicle USB ports wouldn’t be conducive to use with such a small cable. Furthermore, we couldn’t find a wall outlet in the house that could be safely used with it and an adapter. At $25, the Kero Nomad Cable is not very expensive to have on standby in case you need it, but most laptop users will be better off just keeping Apple’s packed-in cable (or a less expensive third-party alternative) in the same bag or case where their laptops are being carried. It’s an okay option at a pretty high price.
Company and Price
Company: Kero Products
Model: Nomad Cable
Compatible: All Lightning-equipped iPads, iPhones + iPods