Pocket-friendly, not wallet-friendly
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The Covert Dock uses GaN instead of silicon, which helps it efficiently provide up to 30W via USB-C and to its HDMI and USB-A ports.
The Genki Covert Dock doesnt look like a dock. It looks more like a wall brick that replicates the functionality of Nintendos much larger Switch Dock, but its small enough to stick into a pocket. Its a great Switch accessory to have if you travel a lot and want to connect your console to a TV wherever you go.
Thats part of what makes it great. Another reason is that, unlike the slew of third-party dock alternatives sold on Amazon, the Covert Dock was made to use the same power spec that Nintendos dock uses. So you wont run the risk of damaging your Switch over the long-term or worse, bricking it. This one pulls the right amount of power from the outlet with its retractable prongs. It even comes with three international adapters, which is a nice bonus to have when you get the chance to travel again.
The Covert Dock is a little thinner and shorter than this 65W Aukey Omnia charger.
The build quality is also excellent, with matte-textured, translucent black plastic encasing the GaN-based innards, similar to whats found on Nintendos Switch Pro controller. Its even a little smaller than the 65W Aukey Omnia USB-C charger I have at home. Considering that this dock replacement is much more capable than the average power brick, its an impressive feat.
These perks come at a high $74.99 price, which is just a bit lower than the $89.99 that Nintendo charges in the US for its standalone dock. The latter also includes an HDMI cable and a power adapter. Theres no HDMI cable included with the Covert Dock, which is tough to understand given the price. But what makes the cost more palatable is that it can double as a laptop dock, which is something the standard dock cant do.
In fact, its possible that this dock might eliminate the need to bring several chargers on a trip. It has a single 30W USB-C PD port that you can use to keep your phone or laptop charged when youre not using it to power the Switch. Having just one USB-C port isnt great if you have multiple devices to charge at once or a laptop that demands more power than the 30W USB-C port can provide. So there are instances in which it might not eliminate the need to bring another adapter.
In addition to charging devices, the USB-C port can be used in conjunction with the HDMI input to mirror or extend your devices screen to a TV. Its worth noting that it pushes out a maximum 1080p 60Hz signal, regardless of the fidelity of your content.
The Covert Dock also features a single USB-A port, which can charge a device. Alternatively, the port can be used for connecting accessories to your Switch, like a wired gaming headset, a receiver for compatible wireless headsets, or, if you have a laptop connected, a flash drive or USB to Ethernet adapter. Itd be great to have more ports, but if it came down to keeping the small size or having more ports, Id pick the former over the latter.
The portable dock includes a USB-C cable with one L-shaped side for better cable management, as well as three travel adapters.
Using the Covert Dock isnt as elegant of an experience as the standard dock. Instead of sliding the Switch into place, you just plug the included USB-C cable (which has one L-shaped side for better cable management) into the console. As a result, if the entertainment center youre setting the console on is small, you might have to put the Switch on the floor or in some other precarious position since theres no cradle here. Having to stress about whether someone, or a pet, might pull the Switch off the shelf is a concern in my apartment when Im using this portable dock. If theres one thing thats good about Nintendos design, its that it keeps things out of view and possible danger.
Despite its high price, the Covert Dock has a simple job, and it does it well. It lets me play the Switch using my TV just as well as the official dock does, and when Im ready to go portable, the console is charged up for my journey. Plus, it serves as a laptop dock in a pinch. If you travel frequently or just want a convenient, pocket-friendly dock to bring along when youre away from home, this is a great option.
Photography by Cameron Faulkner / The Verge
Pocket-friendly, not wallet-friendly