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Tablet Charging Trolley

Multiple tablet charging trolleys are a convenient all-in-one solution for anyone needing to transport, store, charge and sync multiple iPads or other makes of tablet. Anyone looking to buy one faces a bewildering array of choices. Here we narrow down some of the important points to consider.

Multicharge NHS OR SCHOOL tablet charging trolley

Tablet charging trolleys are an increasingly popular choice for people who manage multiple tablets such as the Apple iPad. But what should you be looking for in a tablet charging trolley? The first thing to do is ask yourself what types of tablet you are going to be charging, and how many there will be.

  • Trolleys come in various tablet capacities. Most commonly they charge around 32 devices at a time. This seems to be a sensible figure that strikes a balance between capacity and convenience. There are, however, trolleys that hold more and fewer tablets than this. If you opt for a trolley with a greater capacity, bear in mind the implications for (a) ease of use, and (b) overall trolley size. A trolley containing 32 tablets is a fair bit easier to handle than one containing 64.
  • Some iPad Charging Trolleys will work with other, similar-sized tablets such as Google Nexus 10. Not all do, however, so it pays to check. You may well find that if a trolley doesn't appear to support your particular tablet, the manufacturer can create one for you (we can do that), so don't be afraid to ask.

Trolley or Case?

Trolleys - also known as carts or wheeled cabinets - lend themselves very well to schools but are also useful in other environments such as hospitals and health centres, hotels, exhibitions and many other places. They provide useful mobility and easy access to each tablet. However if you are looking for an on-the-road solution that can be used outdoors such as school field trips, then you might want to consider a tablet charging case instead. Cases generally hold a smaller number of tablets than a trolley but their strength lies in their portability and protective qualities. For everyone else though, a charging trolley is an excellent choice.

MULTICHARGE NHS OR SCHOOL Tablet trolley handle

On the outside

The one thing that defines a trolley perhaps more than anything else is its mobility. Once a trolley is chock full of tablets, you'll want to be able to wheel it from room to room without difficulty.

  • Whatever the tablet capacity, look for a trolley with a chunky, decent-sized handle - something you can hold on to comfortably. It might seem trivial, but you will be using it a lot and will soon notice if this is insufficient.
  • A solid set of castor wheels is important - preferably with some fitted brakes (unless you want to see 32 iPads roll uncontrollably down to room 5C).
  • The overall build quality of the trolley should be high. Don't be tempted by cheap imports as they can end up more trouble than they are worth and risk damaging your tablets.
  • Multiple Tablet Trolleys come in various styles. There's no right or wrong style but you may want to avoid anything too garish and choose something neutral or one that will fit with your existing furnishings. Even better if they can be customised by the manufacturer.
Multi tablet trolley inside

Behind the door

What about the inside? Open the door and you'll find there are quite a few things to consider here:

  • Trolleys should separate each tablet in one way or another - either with foam slots, plastic dividers or a bag. These should be able to accommodate tablets with or without their covers on.
  • Steer clear of trolleys with pull-out trays. There have been many reported problems with this design, not least with cables becoming caught in the runners and eventually splitting apart.
  • Cable management for all your USB cables will save you from a tangled nightmare, so look out for a trolley with this - it will save your sanity.
  • All good trolleys offer easy access to each tablet, but this is something you should double-check all the same as manufacturers' approaches vary.
  • Does the trolley have a clunky power brick hanging out the back of it, or is power management built in? If the latter, then you will find it easier to move the trolley from room to room. Power bricks are not only ugly but cumbersome.
MULTICHARGE SCHOOL OR NHS Charging Syncing tablet trolley

Charging and syncing

Multiple tablet charging is a lot safer with a trolley - you can keep all devices together and upright instead of spread out across (or piled high on top of) a desk.

  • A good charging trolley will save you more than just space however; it will also help you reduce your power consumption, leading to energy savings and, ultimately, budget savings. Choose one that offers energy-efficient charging.
  • A charging trolley should also let you sync multiple tablets and ensure that apps are kept up-to-date. Not all charging trolleys offer this, so be sure to check, and if it doesn't, then see if there is an equivalent 'Charge and Sync' model in the range.
  • If possible, choose a trolley that shows you the charging (and syncing) status of each connected device, such as with LED lights. A small detail that will go a long way.
  • Some trolleys let you charge and sync simultaneously. This can save you even more time.
MULTICHARGE SCHOOL OR NHS Secure tablet trolley

Safe and secure

  • When you've invested in 30 tablets, a lockable trolley door is a must. Padlocks are ok, but if you can, choose a trolley with a digital lock; it's pick-proof, you can restrict access, and best of all, there's no key to lose.
  • Another security element to consider is a permanent fixing point somewhere on the trolley that will allow you to bolt or chain it to a wall when unattended - perhaps overnight when it can be left to charge and sync devices.
  • Has the trolley been built with cooling in mind? You'd be surprised at how hot it can get when 32 tablets are all charging at the same time so check that the trolley manufacturer has taken this into account. (Look for grills or meshes.)
  • Don't forget to check that your trolley meets required British safety standards. (On a related note, is it made in the UK? If so, all the better for British customers - it'll give you an easy point of contact should you need it.)

In summary

Below is a checklist of things to consider when thinking of buying a tablet charging trolley:

  1. A solid handle and braked castors/wheels.
  2. A lock, preferably digital.
  3. A fixing point to allow the trolley to be secured.
  4. Cooling grills/meshes.
  5. Easy access to each tablet.
  6. USB cable management.
  7. Inbuilt power management (ie. no power brick).
  8. Energy-efficient charging.
  9. Simultaneous charging and syncing.
  10. LED indicator lights showing the charge/sync status of each tablet.
  11. Meets British safety standards (preferably made in Britain).
  12. Decent warranty.

Multicharge specialises in Charge & Sync cases, trolleys and cabinets for multiple tablets such as iPad. To find out more about a tablet charging case, give us a call on 01275 858 477 or fill in the following form:

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