Anker guys never cease to amaze me. Just when I think I know what to expect, here comes another surprise. I just received their new 5-port usb wall charger, and was thinking to myself it's probably the same as my previously reviewed 25W 5-port charger, just 3A of additional current. But was I in for a big and pleasant surprise! That original 25W 5-port charger became my irreplaceable everyday accessory with access to charge 5 separate usb devices from a single compact charger plugged to one wall outlet. The new 40W is a big step up, and here is why.
Typical for all the latest Anker products arriving in eco-friendly packaging, the box is also made out of recycled carton with a zero hint of plastic. Upon opening it up, you are presented with a small usb charger and a 5ft detachable cable. When I say small charger, I really mean the size of most common single usb output 1A chargers. With a dimensions of 3.6" x 2.3" x 1" and weight of only 4.6oz this charger is even smaller and more compact than original 25W charger, something I didn't expect considering this new charger is 40W (8A) rated versus 25W (5A). Don't get me wrong, the original 25W charger is still a fantastic product, but they just made it obsolete by releasing a higher capacity the same 5-port charger in a more compact package. Furthermore, the exterior is now wrapped in a soft touch material, similar to their 2nd gen Astro external batteries. It's less slippery, less prone to fingerprints, and feels a lot more rugged especially when you take it with you on a trip.
Upon further examination, the next big change is ALL 5 ports being universal without any apple/android/ipad/samsung labeling. The original 25W version was partitioned with ports for specific devices. Sure it was a good idea, but it required constant close up reading when plugging my other than Samsung (Note 2 is universal with any output) gadgets. What does this mean? Every port is universal with a smart feature and its own microchip to determine max charging speed of the connected device to adjust current supply accordingly, even for the latest iPad with 2.4A. Basically you can have 5 separate devices plugged in and each one will have a tailored current supply adjustment for a total that can't exceed 8A. So unless you are planning to plug in 5 latest iPads, you are in a pretty good shape with more than enough of current supply. For my test, I actually had my Note 2 plugged in by itself to confirm average charging of 1.7A, and then plugged in 3x Nexus 7 tablets (two 2012 and one 2013 edition), and the current draw on my Note 2 stayed the same while Nexus tablets were charging at their corresponding 1A/1.5A speed.
Overall, at the current moment you will not find anything even remotely as advanced as this new 40W 5-port USB wall charger which can power up 5 separate gadgets (a mix of Android, Apple, and any smartwatch, headphones, mp3 player, etc.) and provide a combined 8A of regulated and smart adjusted supply for all it's ports. With such a compact package, 18-months warranty, and for only $25 plus change - I consider this as a MUST HAVE accessory for anybody. Period.
Here are the pictures (the white one is the original 25W charger, for comparison).