Labs Product Review: Energrid VS810PD Power Bank

Black Energrid powerbank about the size of a typical smartphone

by Mairead O’Mahony

In the latest of our product reviews, Mairead O’Mahony in the Labs Team provides an insight into an accessible power bank from Energid designed for someone with a vision impairment.

Product description

The Energrid VS810PD is an accessible power bank designed for visually impaired users. It is available in 10,000 mAh and 20,000 mAh battery capacity. This review is based on the 10,000 mAh battery capacity. It is rectangular in shape and weighs roughly 210g. It is around the size of the iPhone SE20 but thicker. The device has only one button on the upper right corner which when pressed gives a series of vibrations, beeps or both to indicate how much charge is in the power bank.

On the top surface, there is also a smooth area which should be the furthest away from you. The smooth portion of the surface is a series of lights that indicate the amount of power remaining in the bank which may be useful for someone with some vision. On the front of the device, from left to right you will find a USB A port, a USB C port followed by a Micro USB port.

Unboxing / What are my first impressions?

The Energrid VS810PD power bank comes in a box with a USB C cable and an instructional leaflet on how to use it. I really like the shape of the device as it takes up very little space in your jacket pocket, backpack or handbag and isn’t very heavy. On the back of the device, I also noticed there is a series of tactile markings to differentiate the different USB ports but unfortunately the markings are very faded and will probably end up fading completely.

I have been using this for a few days, how do I feel about it?

The first thing I did was fully charged the power bank using the fast charging plug and cable from my iPad mini 6. I was disappointed that there is no audible tone or haptic feedback when the device is fully charged to 100%. For me, the Energrid VS810PD power bank is a must have device. As someone who travels a lot and uses lots of devices that require regular charging such as my phone, iPad and braille display I can now charge them on the go especially when on the bus.

The power bank alerts you to how much battery is in the bank by quickly pressing the button and alerting you to the battery status by a series of vibrations, a series of beeps or both depending on what you set the preference to by holding down the button. 4 vibrations/beeps indicates anything from 76 to 100%, 3 indicates 51 to 75%, 2 indicates 26 to 50% and 1 indicates 0 to 25% battery. I have tried mainstream power banks in the past but as there was no way of determining how much power was in the bank, the battery was often completely drained when I went to use it and when it accidently got pressed in my bag it would also drain the battery.

Is it accessible?

The Energrid VS810PD power bank is accessible. Once you plug the device in to be charged, you are alerted that it is charging by a series of long vibrations, beeps or both depending on what you have your preference set to. You also get confirmation of charging in this way when you connect a device to it. This feature is particularly useful especially when you are charging something such as headphones as often when charging them from your computer or plug there is no sound to indicate they are charging. As previously mentioned, you can check the battery status of the power bank by giving a quick press of the button.

What did I like?

I really love the fact of being able check the battery status of the power bank before, during and after charging a device. I also like the haptic feedback via vibrations confirming when you have the device itself charging or an external device charging from it. When away, not having to worry about if there is enough battery in the bank to charge a device is great.

What didn’t I like?

I was disappointed with the tactile markings on the back of the device for differentiating between the different types of USB ports as they are very faded and I feel it was a missed opportunity to put high quality braille letters there instead of the tactile markings. Also, it would be nice to have a wall charger included with the device.

Did it meet my expectations?

The Energrid VS810PD power bank met my expectations. I got almost 4 full charges out of my iPhone SE20 before needing to charge the device again.

What improvements, if any, would I like to see in this product?

I would love high quality braille indicating the various USB ports instead of the faded tactile markings. Also, it would be nice if the device read out the exact battery percentage rather than a rough indication of battery as when charging a device there is a big difference between 26 to 50% battery in the power bank. As previously mentioned, it would be nice if a wall charger was included with this device.

Would I recommend this item to others?

I would recommend the Energrid VS810PD power bank if you travel a lot and have devices that require regular charging. If you have previously purchased power banks and could never tell how much battery or if any was in it when you went to use it, I would recommend this product. While it is more expensive than mainstream power banks, there are no accessibility features built into them.

Is there other/competing technology you have tried, similar to this item?

While there are lots of mainstream power banks available on the market, as far as I am aware this is the only one I am aware of with accessibility in mind for visually impaired users. The power bank can be purchased directly from BlindShell–