There's nothing quite like wowing your friends by whipping out the perfect answer to a tech crisis. I had such a golden moment recently, during a short stay with a few Nintendo Switch-toting pals and no dock to cast our Mario Kart antics to the big screen. Enter, the Genki Covert Dock.
Third party Nintendo Switch docks have had a fraught history, and a reputation for bricking precious consoles due to a mismatch in their power delivery. When the Covert Dock hit the market, then, many were suspicious. It almost seemed too good to be true; not only is this a third party dock developed inline with the Nintendo Switch's power requirements, but it's fully portable and the same size as a standard wall adapter.
I've used the Genki Covert Dock while travelling and in various places around the house for close to six months now, and it's a revelation - easily one of the best Nintendo Switch accessories on the market right now. While that $74.99 / £84.99 price is a little lofty, it's fully justified if you're after a travelling companion or a slightly cheaper (in the US, anyway) dock alternative.
The Genki Covert Dock offers three ports; an HDMI out to connect to your TV, a USB-C to connect to your Nintendo Switch, and a USB-A port for extra accessories or charging. That's all you need in this pocket-friendly device, though it would have been nice to stretch that USB-C charging power to 45W for a fully comprehensive package that can compete with other dedicated Nintendo Switch chargers. There's no setup required, I was hooking up an HDMI, plugging in my console, and playing within a minute.
I found it extremely easy to pack everything away into a larger Nintendo Switch case or tech pack while on the road, with the footprint of the adapter itself only taking up around 10cm x 6cm x 5cm of space in the bag with a UK plug attached. I did find that 5cm depth to be a little too chunky to slot into a smaller carry case like the cheaper HeyStop clamshell model I use, which itself only offers 5.08cm of depth.
However, if you've got even a corner free in a backpack this is still going to save you plenty of space over the much larger (and delicate) official dock. Some models are also now shipping with foldable outlet designs, which will significantly improve this design.
If you're travelling abroad, it's also worth noting that the Genki Covert Dock ships with three plug types; serving UK, US, EU and Australian outlet types.
After using the Genki Covert Dock for the last six months, I have no concerns over the safety of this device for your system. Whereas previous third party docks worked around the console's power delivery system, brand Human Things has ensured that the Covert Dock manages its power with the system's requirements at the forefront.
I never experienced any freezing, power drops, stuttering, or reduced quality visuals with the Covert Dock - the whole experience felt exactly the same as the traditional drop-in model.
Should you buy the Genki Covert Dock?
This isn't a cheap piece of kit; the Genki Covert Dock comes in at $74.99 / £84.99. That's slightly less than the $89.99 official dock price in the US, and actually slightly more than the £79.99 price in the UK. However, the Genki has a trick up its sleeve that will make anyone who regularly travels with their console reconsider their purchase.
The miniature size and additional charging power offered by the design makes this an all-in-one charging and docking companion for the road. Sure, you're only getting 30W of power out of it, so you won't be fast-charging any laptops on the road. However, if you need a brick to keep your phone, tablet, and Switch topped up, while also plugging into any TVs you come across on your travels, it's a lifesaver.
If you're in the UK, and simply setting up your console in a separate room, we'd recommend aiming for a discount over the standard £84.99 cost. However, those in the US looking to save some cash and pick up some neat features on the way will find plenty of value here.
It's important to note that the Genki Covert Dock will not work with the Nintendo Switch Lite, as the handheld-only system has no video output features.
How we tested the Genki Covert Dock
I've had my hands on the Genki Covert Dock for months now, testing its reliability and portability through travels around the UK and in longer-term setups around the house. During that time I was docking a Nintendo Switch OLED and an original 2017 Nintendo Switch console using the device, connecting via HDMI to a range of TVs and monitors. I also tested the charging capacity on an iPhone 13 Pro and iPad Air 4th generation.
For more must-have gear, check out our guides to the best Nintendo Switch controllers and the best Nintendo Switch memory cards. Or, if you're yet to pick up a console, we're also rounding up this week's Nintendo Switch bundles and the latest Nintendo Switch Lite deals as well.