The capabilities of your iPhone and your iPad are amazing. You can browse the Web, watch movies, listen to music, take and edit photos, play games, read books – the list goes on and on, but sadly your battery doesn’t. A recent Leapfrog Research survey confirmed what we already know, that battery life is the number one problem for consumers in mobile. It topped the list with 37 percent of the vote.
We’ve discussed how to maximize your iPhone battery life before, but who wants to have to manage features closely and turn functionality off? There is another way to keep your devices ticking when you can’t find a power socket; you can invest in an extended battery case or an external battery pack. We’ve been investigating your best options and here they are.
Here’s a nice, lightweight, portable external battery pack that comes in various colors. It’s basically a 4400mAh battery in an aluminum shell. You can use it to charge up your iPad, iPhone, iPod, or any other device that will plug into the USB port. The included cable has various adapters, so it covers all your Apple devices. You’ll be able to charge an iPad once or your iPhone a couple of times with this. It has an LED indicator on the front to show how much charge is remaining and there’s a wee LED on the top that can serve as a torch, which is a handy extra feature.
This faux leather case combines protection with power. The iPad 2 and every newer model will fit snugly inside and there’s a USB port, so you can basically plug any device in there to recharge it. The battery is rated at 11,600mAh and that roughly translates to two full charges for your iPad or seven charges for your iPhone (mileage may vary). If you do stick your iPad in it you’ll find that all the ports and controls are accessible, there’s even a cut out for the camera. The cover also folds back to act as a stand for landscape view and the metal stud closure ensures that it doesn’t swing open when you don’t want it to.
Mophie Juice Pack Plus ($120)
Probably the best known brand offering battery cases for the iPhone, Mophie knows how to produce an extended battery case that carefully walks the line between bulk and power. You won’t find a slimmer battery case than this, and it offers some protection, too. The sleek design comes in various colors and adds 120 percent battery life. All functions are still accessible with the case on. It has LEDs on the back to display the remaining charge. The drawback with Mophie is the price, though it does offer a couple of cheaper cases with smaller batteries, as well as external battery packs that will charge an iPhone or an iPad.
Anker Astro 2 ($40)
You’ll get at least one full charge for your iPad and up to four charges for your iPhone from this popular battery pack. It’s well designed, with a row of LEDs on the front to indicate the power level and a flashlight LED on the top. It can be used with most devices, and it even has two USB ports, so that it can charge two devices simultaneously. The dual charging capability is great and this is a solid choice.
This is another battery pack that can charge your iPhone and your iPad at the same time. This one is rated at 7,000mAh, so it should have enough juice to cover both. It’s pretty lightweight and has a plain, unobtrusive design in black with a power button on the front and four LEDs to show you how much energy is remaining. Just remember that you will need an adapter for the iPhone, because it doesn’t come with one.
RAVPower Dynamo ($40)
You can find all the features you need in this offering and it’s available at an attractive discounted price right now. The battery pack is rated at a whopping 14,000mAh, promising up to eight full charges for your iPhone. It is also capable of charging your iPad and your iPhone simultaneously thanks to the dual USB ports. It comes with a few adapters and a little travel pouch, but you will need your original cable for Apple devices. It has a standard four LED display to indicate remaining charge and a flashlight function if you hold the power button down for three seconds.
One of our favorite case manufacturers, Incipio, also makes an extended battery case for the iPhone. This one is slim and it offers good all-round protection, as well as an extra few hours of juice. The battery is rated at 2600mAh, so you’re looking at almost double the normal battery life. The power button and standard LED display is on the front and you can use your iPhone as normal with the case on.
Fluxmob Bolt ($60)
Thanks to Kickstarter all sorts of clever designs like this can now be realized. The Fluxmob Bolt combines a wall charger with an external battery and that makes it a very clever portable accessory that travelers will love. You can use this instead of your normal wall charger (it isn’t much bigger), but it also contains a 3000mAh battery that will double your iPhone’s battery life. It will work with your iPad too, but you’ll need your original cable.
We love the clever design of this extended battery case. There’s a light protective plastic case that can be used to keep your iPhone safe when you’re traveling light or on short trips. When you need it, simply slide it into the extended battery case which offers 2,500mAh of extra power. It should give you an extra nine hours of talk time on your iPhone. It’s a really stylish and slim option, which makes it stand out of the battery case line-up.
New Trent PowerPak+ ($55)
It may be the most industrial-looking device on the list, but the New Trent PowerPak+ really packs a charge. The battery is rated at 13,500mAh and it has dual USB ports, so you can charge your iPad and your iPhone at the same time (you will need your own Apple cables). There’s a power button and a single LED on the corner that changes color to give you an idea of remaining battery life. It looks like this because it’s designed to be rugged and accompany you on outdoors hikes or camping trips.
So ends our look at battery packs and battery cases for the iPhone and the iPad. If you want to recommend another entry, then post a comment.