Review: Venom Xbox One Vertical Charging Stand — Sturdy and expensive

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Unlike the original Xbox One, the new Xbox One S and Xbox One X support vertical placement. This was due to the fact that some of the key ventilation structures were blocked when the original model was turned on its side. While the newer consoles allow for more options in terms of how you can place them in your entertainment cabinet, they don’t come with vertical stands unless you purchase the elusive Xbox One X Project Scorpio Edition.

There are numerous Xbox One S and Xbox One X stands on the market, but a lot of them are made from low-quality plastic and have a flimsy feel. Luckily, Venom offers a great alternative that does much more than simply allow you to place your console vertically. In this market, it’s necessary to stand out.

Venom’s “Vertical Charging Stand” features a matte black body which feel substantial and sturdy. In front of the device there are two integrated charging docks for your controllers. The docks also provide a convenient place to store your gamepads when they’re not in use. Behind the stand portion there are six slots which let you place some physical games.

Lastly, the package comes with two rechargeable battery packs which work with any official Xbox One controller. We were able to try them out with a standard Xbox One controller and the Xbox One Elite Controller, and were surprised as to how long the charge lasted. Lately, we’ve been having issues with rechargeable batteries — like those manufactured by Duracell — so getting these as part of the box was a nice surprise. They even manage to power an Xbox One controller for more than twelve hours even with slight vibration on!

The Vertical Charging Stand features four notches and two rubber grips inside the console housing area. This allows it to firmly secure your Xbox One S or Xbox One X in place in an upright position. We were initially worried about the fit the stand offered but it’s robust to say the least. The console won’t be falling over if your cat accidentally brushes against it for example.

Nowadays, many people travel with their consoles or sometimes rely on nontraditional methods to power their devices. The Vertical Charging Stand’s controller docks are powered by USB instead of a standard adapter. This means that you can recharge your Xbox One controller wherever you have access to any device which uses USB — like a laptop — or any other USB charging adapter. We even used an Apple Charger to power them!

Let’s say that you’re traveling with your Xbox One S or Xbox One X — a lot of people do — and want to charge your phone while gaming. Luckily, the Vertical Charging Stand features two more USB ports for your cellphone or tablet. This is also convenient if you want to charge your phone or tablet close to where you’re gaming in your house.

Obviously many people won’t be taking the device with them wherever they go like us, but even with day-to-day use, the additional USB ports and USB power supply come in handy. For example, at home, we have a standard setup which features two power outlets and two USB plugs. The two power outlets are used to connect an extension cord with numerous devices like a PlayStation 4 Pro, Nintendo Switch, broadband modem, wireless router, Kinect adapter, and the television. The other outlet is reserved for the Xbox One X as Microsoft recommends you not use a surge protector extension cord with the console. The Xbox One X itself doesn’t have any free ports because they’re being used by external hard drives or the Kinect. Luckily, we were able to directly plug in the Vertical Charging Stand into the USB wall outlet and receive plenty of power to charge the controllers. Having that option is great for a technology-heavy household where power outlets are in short supply like ours.

The best part is that the Vertical Charging Stand only sells for £29.99. Even buying rechargeable battery packs which don’t last as long costs £15 at local department stores. Paying £29.99 for a high-quality stand and USB-powered rechargeable batteries seems like a good deal but it would be a home run at the £25 mark.

Venom’s offering is definitely a functional product that’s meant for a small portion of consumers who want to set up their consoles vertically. There really isn’t much to fault here aside from the slightly high price point. However, the manufacturer does need to change its packaging as the box features the original Xbox One but says it only works with Xbox One S and Xbox One X. A consumer might easily get confused if they were to simply look at the box because either they would think it’s for the original Xbox One or skip it entirely because they were looking for a dedicated stand for their Xbox One S or Xbox One X.

If you’re in the market for a vertical stand, then Venom’s product might be the best one on the market with the most features. Microsoft’s official version sells for £14.99 and is just a narrow plastic base which doesn’t make the console feel that secure. You can also buy a low-quality third-party stand for roughly £6 but those products always give us cause for concern because they’re either misaligned or too flimsy. Venom’s Vertical Charging Stand might be more expensive, but offers peace of mind because the console won’t be falling down at all due to it’s shape and ridges which keep your Xbox One S or Xbox One S locked in place.

8.5/10

Venom Vertical Charging Stand on Amazon

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