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IOGEAR Solar Bluetooth Hands-Free Car Kit w/ Crystal Clear Sound & Up To 13 Hours Talk Time (GBHFK231)
  • Owned For: more than 1 year

1 out of 5 eggs Attractive concept but flawed implementation 01/24/2014

This review is from: IOGEAR Solar Bluetooth Hands-Free Car Kit w/ Crystal Clear Sound & Up To 13 Hours Talk Time (GBHFK231)

Pros: 1. Solar charging very convenient
2. Loud enough in my Honda Accord

Cons: One unit died just after warranty expired, second unit starting to fail, also shortly after 1 year

Other Thoughts: Solar charging for a product like this is an excellent idea, if it works but, this product simply does not deliver.

My unit started acting up shortly after its 1-year warranty expired (would get disconnected at random, LEDs started blinking, and other crazy beavior) and a couple months later it completely died.

My partner's unit, which has just passed its first year of service (and therefore, it is also out of warranty) has started to act weird in the same way. I suspect it is coming down with the same problem and will soon die.

I believe the lithium-ion battery used in this product simply is not meant to be used directly exposed to the hot sun, while being charged or discharged. As an electronics designer, having developed several mobile product with li-ion batteries myself, I know that the chemistry of these batteries cannot withstand being charged and discharged at such high temperatures. In order for this product to be able to be charged, I suspect the designers had to cut corners and allow charging at dangerously high temperatures. If they would not have done that, this product would be useless on hot summer days. So, I believe, the idea is great but the implementation (having the battery exposed to the heat) is fundamentally flawed.

When I called IOGEAR's customer support, they simply reminded me of the fact that the warranty was over, and offered no help whatsoever.

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Zoltan T.'s Profile

Display Name: Zoltan T.

Date Joined: 02/22/05

  • Reviews: 1
  • Helpfulness: 0
  • First Review: 01/24/14
  • Last Review: 01/24/14
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