Innergie's mCube 90 isn't quite what you expect at first. Though you might think that it's an emergency charger in the style of the Callpod Fueltank, it's actually a universal charging adapter for powering multiple gadgets at once. You can use it with your cell phone, of course, but it also supports laptops and Netbooks. On the whole, it's a quality product with solid construction. The design is a little perplexing, and we don't like that we have to pay extra for phone-charging tips, but it does its job well. The mCube is $99.99, which is rather expensive.
The mCube 90 and its various parts come in attractive packaging that includes a soft zippered case. The power adapter is a white rectangle that measures 5.07 inches by 2.76 inches by 0.93 inch and weighs 9.28 ounces. Innergie claims that the mCube 90 is the smallest universal power adapter. While that might very well be the case, the mCube 90 isn't exactly featherweight. On the exterior, you'll find a plug for the AC power cord, a USB port, and a DC output port for notebooks. There's also a LED indicator.
The adapter actually consists of two parts that separate near one end. The smaller part (the subunit) is used as the conduit for powering your Netbook or phone while in a car or on an airplane. On one end is a proprietary connection that accommodates the DC cable for your car's cigarette lighter. That cable measures almost 2 feet, so it should fit most environments. On the other end of the subunit are the aforementioned ports for the USB phone cables and the DC cable for notebooks. You'll need to purchase the airplane cable separately.
The laptop cable also measures about 5 feet. One end connects with the adapter while the other end has a connection for the various laptop tips. Fortunately, you get seven tips in the box, which should be enough to accommodate most laptops from Acer, Asus, Compaq, Dell, Gateway, HP, IBM, Lenovo, Sony, and Toshiba. The fit between the tips and the cable is tight, but the tips come in a small cloth bag.
To use the mCube 90 to power your phone or laptop from a wall charger, you must reconnect the sub unit with the main part of the adapter. The AC power cable uses a proprietary connection, but it measures a convenient 5 feet. We're not sure why the Innergie designed the mCube 90 in this way--we think it would be easier if you kept the adapter in piece no matter what you were charging. Also, we'd prefer if the various cable ports were consolidated.
Unfortunately, the mCube 90 doesn't come with any phone tips in the box. You must purchase them separately for $7.99 per manufacturer. Each package includes a retractable cable and the various tips for that manufacturer. The Motorola kit, for example, comes with mini-USB and micro-USB tips. Other kits are available for LG, HTC, Nokia, Sony Ericsson, RIM, and Samsung phones. That leaves a few manufacturers--Apple, PCD, Kyocera, Pantech, and Palm--out in the cold.
The phone cable uses the USB port next to the DC power cable jack. The cable stretches to 2.5 feet with the phone tips connecting neatly at one end. We tried powering a Samsung SGH-T349 and a Samsung SGH-A177. Both handsets and an IBM laptop charged in the normal manner. One particularly nice feature of the mCube 90 is that it can power a phone and a laptop simultaneously.