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Hands-on Gear Review

Powerboard Review

Price:   $1,000 List
Pros:  Inexpensive, good battery life, light
Cons:  Not the most fun, underpowered, awful off the pavement
Bottom line:  This board felt a little weak for our adult testers, but might be great for kids
Editors' Rating:   
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Manufacturer:   Hoverboard

Our Verdict

The Powerboard by Hoverboard was somewhat unremarkable. This was a common sentiment among our testers, and aptly sums up this board's performance. This board did do well in our battery life test and had good customer support, but did fall short in our most important category: fun factor. This board does have a slightly lower list price than some of its competitors, but its performance was substantially worse.


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Our Analysis and Hands-on Test Results

Review by:
David Wise and Austin Palmer

Last Updated:
Wednesday
November 23, 2016

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The Powerboard is a typical hoverboard, best suited for smooth pavement. However, this board failed to impress in our tests and had one of the lower scores. It did exceptionally poorly when we tested its outdoor capabilities, and only marginally better when we evaluated its fun factor.

The Powerboard by Hoverboard.
The Powerboard by Hoverboard.

Performance Comparison


Fun Factor


This was our highest weighted category, and made up 50 percent of the overall score. However, this board fell short in this metric, earning a poor score of 4 out of 10. Our testers noted that this board felt exceptionally sluggish, causing many of our testers to fall off the board after rapid direction changes when the board lacked the power to keep up with them. They also noted that this board didn't feel quite as stable as some of the others.

While this board's top speed was faster than expected  it felt like it lacked the power and acceleration to keep up with the competition
While this board's top speed was faster than expected, it felt like it lacked the power and acceleration to keep up with the competition

This board hit a top speed of 9.12 mph, well exceeding the maximum claimed speed of 6 mph. The Powerboard was one of the lightest models that we tested, weighing 21.2 pounds, and comfortably fit inside the protective skin and carrying case we purchased from a third party. You can purchase the Powerboard in four colors, though it does lack any sort of Bluetooth capabilities.

Outdoor Capabilities


The Powerboard continued failing to shine in this metric, earning an abysmal 3 out of 10. This board struggled at clearing the cracks and bumps that other models cleared with ease. This model continued to struggle when heading over dirt or grass, sounding like it was noticeably in pain.

This model could very easily be considered a pavement-only board.
This model could very easily be considered a pavement-only board.

This board did all right on the steeper hills, but not enough to offset its prior poor performance.

This board did all right on the steep hills  but only if you weren't in a hurry to get to the top.
This board did all right on the steep hills, but only if you weren't in a hurry to get to the top.

Support


The Powerboard did excel in this category, actually tying for the top score in this metric with a 7 out of 10. The manufacturer responded promptly to our question asking how to re-calibrate it with helpful and accurate information, as well as providing information about what to do next if that did not solve the problem. This model also has a one-year standard warranty, with all sales being final.

Unfortunately, this board severely suffered in our testing, receiving enough damage that we ended up having to replace the plastic shell.

We broke the Powerboard's plastic shell in enough places that we had to order a replacement and swap it out ourselves.
We broke the Powerboard's plastic shell in enough places that we had to order a replacement and swap it out ourselves.

Battery


The Powerboard also excelled in our battery test, earning a respectable 7 out of 10. This model lasted for 1 hour, and 44 minutes in our run time test, where we ran each board lap after lap through our obstacle course until it died. We then tested the actual range of the board, or how far you could travel on flat, level ground at full speed. This model lasted for a total of seven miles, surprisingly beating some of the other similar models.

The Powerboard's charge time matched the manufacturer's claim.
The Powerboard's charge time matched the manufacturer's claim.

This model was also right in line with its claimed required charging time of 2-3 hours. We timed how long it took to top off after completely depleting it, and came up with 2 hours, and 40 minutes to completely charge it

Value


While this model does offer an attractively low list price, it had the second lowest overall score in our testing process, not necessarily offering a great value, more of a you get what you pay for situation.

Conclusion


While the Powerboard did have good support and an excellent battery life, it fell short in the areas that are the most important to most people. This board took a beating in our tests, and struggled across the board in anything off-road. All in all, we would recommend you check out one of the other models, as they were only slightly more expensive and substantially better.
David Wise and Austin Palmer

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