In an era of awfully thirsty electronic gadgets, batteries can no longer hold up to our needs without frequent charging. While waiting for the time when the perfect battery will become available on the market, why quit using our beloved phones while we’re traveling abroad, or maybe went camping for 3 days, right?
Portable batteries are the solution to keeping you charged all the time. However, not all products are the same, so it’s of great importance to be able to choose the device that will fit you perfectly.
To do that, you first need to think about what you need it for, and of course, your budget. The search can easily become overwhelming, so we’re here to help you and save you additional headaches.
To do that we’ve decided to fully examine the features of portable batteries available on the market and make a list of the top products we consider worthy of purchase. Keep reading on to find out more and make your buying process much easier for you!
|Anker Astro E3 External Battery||8.2 oz.||5.4 x 2.6 x 0.7 in||10,000 mAh||Check price on Amazon|
|Aduro PowerUp External Battery||12 oz.||4 x 1 x 5 in||11,000 mAh||Check price on Amazon|
|PureGear Purejuice Powerbank||10.1 oz.||4.2 x 1.1 x 7.9 in||10,400 mAh||Check price on Amazon|
|Asus ZenPower Portable Battery Pack||10.1 oz.||3.5 x 2.3 x 0.8 in||10,050 mAh||Check price on Amazon|
|iLuv Dual USB Port Power Bank||9.6 oz.||8.8 x 3.5 x 1.5 in||10,000 mAh||Check price on Amazon|
|Kanex USB-C GoPower Battery||13.6 oz.||5 x 4 x 1 in||15,000 mAh||Check price on Amazon|
|Ventev Powercell 6000+ Backup Battery||3.2 oz.||4.7 x 2.6 x 0.9 in||15,000 mAh||Check price on Amazon|
Features to Consider Before Buying
Even if it looks like that, not all portable batteries are made the same – different models can have different basic features. That’s why we’ve gone over the most basic features and explained them to you. Remember to always take your needs into consideration as the final decision is yours!
One of the most important features of portable batteries is their capacity. The first thing you should know is that the capacity of a battery is measured in milliamp hours (mAh). The battery on your device – no matter whether it’s a tablet or a smartphone – measures the same.
When you start looking at batteries, you’ll notice that each come with a different capacity. Now, let’s say you’re looking at a portable battery with the capacity of 10,000 mAh.
A smartphone with a battery of 1400 mAh can be charged about 6-7 times with that capacity. Usually, tablets use up more energy because they’re larger devices, while smartphones require less power.
Since the battery you’ll be buying needs to be portable, this is the second thing you’ll need to watch out for. A sleek, lightweight, small battery is very good for when you’re on the go and you need your device charged once or twice. Most of the time, smaller, lighter items don’t have a very large capacity but they’re very easy to be carried around.
On the other hand, if you’re going to be away from a wall socket for longer periods of time, a higher capacity battery is preferable to a lighter one that fits in your back pocket.
Depending on your purpose, you might want to consider whether capacity is more important to you than portability – you might have to compromise on the portability feature to get more capacity.
The charging speed is an important feature for those who care to get their devices charged faster. Look at the manufacturer’s specifications – they will also include the amperage of your battery pack. This indicates how quickly your devices will charge: the higher the amperage, the faster the speed.
However, the speed isn’t the only thing why amperage matters – check to see what your device needs! For instance, a tablet needs a port of at least 2 A in order to be charged, even if that means charging at a lower speed. If you have a port of 1 A, your tablet won’t be able to get charged at all if you’re using it while it’s plugged in.
You should really check to see if the battery you’re buying has an integrated circuit or not. The integrated circuit is the thing that makes your battery safe. Thanks to the integrated circuit, your battery pack will automatically see what sort of device you’re plugging in, in order to charge it efficiently at its maximum capacity.
If the battery of your device is completely empty, it’s better not to charge it at maximum capacity, even if the portable charger promises fast charging. Actually, that’s another reason why you need an integrated circuit – it won’t let your device get damaged.
Once you start browsing through the plethora of portable battery chargers on the market, you’ll see that many of them look pretty sophisticated on the outside, but don’t work as you would expect. On the contrary, some products may not have the best design but actually work better.
That’s why you need to understand the inner workings of such a product before you buy one; you can’t use looks as a guide. You can’t even use extras such as LEDs as an indicator of whether that battery charger is good or not. A LED will tell you the charge status, and even if it’s a nice feature it’s still not an essential one.
However, sometimes the extras are a nice perk to have, especially if you’re thinking of charging cables. You can always use your own, but if you can get better ones already included – go for it!
Another important feature is the quality of the batteries used in the portable charger. While the norm is to use lithium-ion, the quality of this alloy can vary too. As such, the best batteries on the market are also the most expensive ones.
If you’re looking for a mix of reasonable price and performance, you can choose a medium-priced item that uses reliable, budget-friendly batteries.
Since you can’t always know what a battery will be like until you buy it, it might be a good idea to do some research, ask the salespeople and read a couple of online reviews that should give you a clearer idea.
When we’re talking about your run-of-the-mill lithium-ion cell, you should know that it typically withstands charging your devices 500 times or so. Once you go over that limit, the charger will start to slow down and it won’t be able to deliver the same high speed it promised.
However, the higher the quality of your cell, the longer the life of your item will be too. At this point, it’s also a good idea to choose a product with a good warranty for a year or two. Let’s move on to the actual product reviews now!
Best Products on Today’s Market
Hopefully, we’ve simplified and made things clearer for you by now. Taking into account all the features we’ve already talked about, let’s see portable batteries that provide the highest quality, being the best items on the market in our opinion.
Price: Approximately $30
Weight: 8.2 oz.
Dimensions: 5.4 x 2.6 x 0.7 in
Specific features: Exclusive PowerIQ Technology; charge speed up to 3 A; ultra-high capacity; 4-LED power meter; recharges in 6 hours with a 2 A adapter; 10,000 mAh battery capacity
Best use: Camping for longer periods of time
The Anker Astro E3 External Battery is actually the second generation Astro E3 portable charger with an electric battery, making it an improvement over the first model. The technology used in the portable charger should allow for fast and safe charging.
One of the qualities which most customers like is its PowerIQ, which detects your device and delivers the fastest charge consequently. This PowerIQ is a type of technology employed exclusively by this manufacturer, which is able to adjust the amperage intelligently after it identifies the device.
That makes it possible to deliver the fastest possible charge depending on the particular device. Another well liked quality is its ultra-high capacity, which makes it possible to charge an iPhone over four times.
A Galaxy S5 can be charged 2.5 times since it’s a large capacity phone, and any tablet can be charged at least once. All of that is put into one device that comes with a sleek, elegant design while at the same time being extremely lightweight.
Its high performance, as well as its great design, can be explained by the top notch materials used, its grade A circuitry and a 10% more efficient battery. Therefore you can rely on this item, and the producer offers you an 18 months warranty.
- PowerIQ can detect amperage
- Sleek & lightweight
- Comes with a warranty
- Capacity may not be enough to charge tablets multiple times
- Some users may prefer faster recharging time
Related: In order to get the most out of your portable battery, why not get the Hard EVA Travel Case for Anker – it’ll protect your battery against scratches and bumps! The case is specially designed for Anker and it should fit your device like a glove. Considering its budget-friendly price, it may be a great addition to your travel gear.
Price: Approximately $18
Weight: 12 oz.
Dimensions: 4 x 1 x 5 in
Specific features: Fast charging; 11,000 mAh capacity (Input: 5V/1000 mAh, Output: 3 ports – 1 A, 2.1 A; 4.1 A total); status LEDs; can recharge iPhone 5S six times
Best use: Camping for longer periods of time; longer power outages
Description: The Aduro PowerUp External Battery is another one great item in its category. Coming with an affordable price, you should be getting a pretty decent deal over here.
The portable battery works via three output ports. Two of these work at an amperage of 1 A, while the other one works with 2.1 A.
Other chargers you can find on the market include among their specifications the warning that the output ports should be used one at a time, but that’s not the case with the Aduro battery pack. So you can enjoy the full 4.1 A power and charge three devices at once.
The status LEDs will let you know how much charging capacity you have left but its high-quality cells and premium chips make this product work extremely well. In fact, it can charge a tablet and 2 phones at once and can recharge 6 times a large capacity phone like the iPhone 5S.
Apart from getting an external battery, you’ll also receive a travel bag and a micro USB cable. On top of that, for anyone who cares, you can get the portable battery in a variety of different colors and designs.
When it comes to its dimensions, you’ll probably notice it’s a bit chunkier than other models – that happens because of the 3 USB ports that were mounted on the side. The length and width are about the same as a Samsung Galaxy S3, so it should fit perfectly in your coat pocket.
- You could charge three devices at once;
- Suitable for tablets and other larger devices
- You receive a travel bag for free
- It’s a big bigger than other models
- Some cables for specific phones might not be included
Related: If you enjoy technology even when you’re on the go, why not try out the Syllable Truly Wireless Headphones – they’re wireless earbuds that can be taken everywhere with you! You’d be able to use them with a variety of devices – they’re so small, you won’t even notice you carry them around. On top of that, the earbuds are noise canceling and sweatproof.
Price: Approximately $20
Weight: 10.1 oz.
Dimensions: 4.2 x 1.1 x 7.9 in
Specific features: 10,400 mAh capacity; provides up to 40 hours of additional talk-time; 1 USB port with 2.1 A output; UL approved battery; micro USB cable included
Best use: Camping for longer periods of time; longer power outages
The PureGear PureJuice Powerbank is an amazing portable battery with an affordable price. One thing we like about it is that it provides extremely fast charging speed. That’s why you can use this portable charger in a number of situations like emergencies, camping, hiking and so forth.
Having such an amazing power and providing 3 full charges for an average device, this portable battery should allow you to stay connected at all times. Even though it has a 10,000 mAh battery, the product itself is pretty small though a bit on the bulky side.
However, the extra thickness doesn’t make its design less appealing, and you have to consider that the advantage of such a high power has to entertain its downsides. The device features heat resistance, meaning that it doesn’t heat up while you’re using it.
On top of that, it stops charging automatically once your device is full and it includes a status indicator light so you could keep better tracking of the charge level. However, it has a single charging port that gives you only one charge per time – if you tend to use multiple devices at the same time, you may find this troubling.
- Extremely fast charging times
- A feature that automatically stops charging once the device is full
- Heat resistant
- Only one charging port
- A bit bulkier design
Related: If you’re getting ready for your next camping trip, don’t forget to grab a set of the MalloMe LED Camping Flashlights – they come in a set of two, each with a distinctive bright color! Each light bulb comes with more than 100,000 hours of power, making sure you never stay in the dark. The flashlights operate on 6AA batteries, that come included as well!
Price: Approximately $25
Weight: 10.1 oz.
Dimensions: 3.5 x 2.3 x 0.8 in
Specific features: Brand new condition; gold color; lithium-ion battery; 3.6 V/ 10,050 mAh capacity (input: DC 5 V, 2 A; output: DC 5.1 V, 2.4 A); compatible with smartphones and tablets
Best use: Emergency recharge
Description: The Asus ZenPower Portable Battery Pack is one of the smallest and most lightweight products we found on the market, seeing as it can fit perfectly in the palm of your hand. That makes it perfect for all sorts of camping trips and outdoor expeditions since you can easily fit it anywhere.
However, don’t let its size fool you – it has a pretty strong 10,050 mAh battery that can charge any smart device fully and rather quickly. That’s because it has a 2.4 A output which makes it possible to charge any phone pretty fast and efficient.
Another great thing about this product is the increased safety measures it takes to protect the devices it charges. It’s what distinguishes it from similar portable batteries on the market and it’s one of the main reasons we’ve decided to include it amongst our favorite products.
As such, the ASUS PowerSafe technology monitors the temperature, controls the voltage and protects from any short-circuits happening. If the design is also important to you, the high-class materials are implemented together with a good craftsmanship – a winning combination.
This portable battery has an outer casing made from lightweight aluminum, which makes it very strong apart from the fact that it looks good. This portable battery is thoroughly tested and can actually withstand 132 pounds of weight!
Besides, it has an ergonomic, smooth design that makes it seem like a luxury item – another reason why it would be a great purchase.
- Durable and elegant
- PowerSafe technology that protects your device
- Small and easy to be carried around
- May not charge as fast as expected
- It doesn’t include any warranty
Related: If you’re looking for items to add to your survival kit, then take a look at the A2S K2 Peak Paracord Bracelet – a bracelet that features multiple items in one! The bracelet has a compass embedded into it and a fire starter that should prove helpful in times of need. On top of that, the bracelet includes an emergency knife and a whistle – a real lifesaving item!
Price: Approximately $40
Weight: 9.6 oz.
Dimensions: 8.8 x 3.5 x 1.5 in
Specific features: 10,000 mAh; compatible with Apple and Android smartphones, and USB devices such as e-readers, portable speakers, wireless headphones; smart power function; 2.1 A output; automatic detection of device
Best use: Traveling
Description: The iLuv Dual USB Port Power Bank is a largely appreciated portable charger that comes with a great price. The design of the portable battery is ultra-thin and slim, giving it the much-wanted sophisticated look.
This power bank can proudly state it has a large battery capacity of 10,000 mAh which enables it to charge a lot of devices very fast. You can use it for Apple and Android gadgets, as well as for any type of device that has a USB port.
Once you connect the device, its smart power function will turn the battery on. In fact, this type of advanced technology will even detect the sort of device you have connected and therefore make sure it’s charged at the maximum charge output. That makes the whole process very efficient and fast.
On top of that, this portable battery will prevent overcharging and overheating your device, thus preventing any damages. It also features LED power indicators that will let you know how much power you have left inside the battery pack so you’ll know exactly which device you can charge next.
That makes it a great solution for people who travel a lot and need to quickly charge their devices.
- It comes at a great price
- Ultra-thin and lightweight
- Safety technology that prevents damages
- May not be suitable for charging tablets multiple times
- Some users might appreciate faster charging times
Related: If you’re in need of a charging cable, take a look at the Apple certified Iluv Lightning Charge & Sync Cable with an overall length of 3 feet! The cable should be compatible with most phone models and used both as a charging cable and for data transport as well. You get all of that for an extremely affordable price.
Price: Approximately $100
Weight: 13.6 ounces
Dimensions: 5 x 4 x 1 inches
Specific features: 15,000 mAh Portable Battery; dual charging port; 3.0A + 2.4A fast charging; premium aluminum body design; high-efficiency circuitry design; priority charging detection; USB-IF Certified US
Best use: On the go charging
Description: The Kanex USB-C GoPower Battery is certainly in the more expensive price range, but it does deliver great quality to make it worth it. For instance, it has a 15,000 mAh battery that makes it possible for you to charge a large capacity device once, or conversely smaller capacity devices a number of times.
As long as your gadget has a USB port, you’re good to go since this product is compatible with various devices. In fact, the battery holds that much power that can even charge once a whole MacBook, apart from regular phones and tablets.
The good thing is that this battery pack has a dual charging port which enables you to charge two devices at once, via USB-C and USB-A ports.
This is great if you don’t want to waste time waiting for your phone to be charged so you can connect your GPS. Since it provides amperages of 3 A and 2.4 A respectively, your devices will be charged twice as fast than with an average charger.
These features are complemented by a premium aluminum body design and that makes this product look good but be sturdy as well. The materials used and great craftsmanship can be noted in the high-efficiency circuitry design as well.
That decreases power waste and increases the efficiency of your charging, but it also prevents the over-charging of your gadgets thanks to its incorporated circuitry protection.
Moreover, the high capacity battery cells are very performant, and the LED battery status indicator will let you know how much power you have left inside the battery pack. So if you’re looking for a good USB-IF certified US battery pack, this is it!
- Can charge multiple devices at once
- Sturdy yet elegant design
- LED indicator
- Some may find the price to be too high
- No warranty included
Related: Check out the Kanex Charge & Sync Cable – it should work great with any iOs device! The cable comes with a length of 3.3 feet and can be used to back-up and sync all sorts of data from any iOs device. On top of that, you can use with power banks as a charging cable.
Price: Approximately $60
Weight: 3.2 oz.
Dimensions: 4.7 x 2.6 x 0.9 in
Specific features: Charging port specifically for tablets; compatible with handsets, tablets, various USB devices; 2.1 A port; dual-charging ability; short circuit and temperature protection
Best use: Traveling
Description: The Ventev Powercell 6000+ Backup Battery is definitely another item worth mentioning. Since it comes with both a wall charger and a backup battery, you’ll find this item ideal for traveling purposes.
You can charge your devices fast while you’re on the go, but once you get to your hotel room you can re-charge the portable battery too. Or you can even charge your phone/tablet while it’s plugged into the wall – your choice.
Since it’s a dual output, you can charge two devices at once with a pretty high speed. Its power is about 6,000 mAh – lower than other products we reviewed here, but it should still do a decent job. The portable charger has integrated folding AC prongs too, and you won’t need to carry a wall charger.
The LED indicator will show you the battery level, or how much energy you have left to charge another device, but you can use its two ports at once – the 1A port being for smartphones and the 2.1 A port for tablets.
- Can charge two devices at the same time
- Decent charging speed
- Comes with integrated AC prongs as well
- Comes at a higher price
- Not that great capacity
Related: If you want to get the maximum out of your Ventev portable battery, consider getting a Ventev Chargesync Apple Lightning Cable. The cable comes with a length of 3.3 feet and at a more-than-decent price. Since it’s aimed mostly for use while traveling, should prove to be pretty tough.
After examining all these products, you can see that most of them offer great advantages and can be used in various situations. Hopefully, we’ve helped you with your decision making process.
Even if we made this list considering the general features a good battery pack should have, we couldn’t have possibly taken into account your individual needs and way of life – remember, you have the final word.
We’re also curious to know if some of you already have one of the batteries we’ve talked about – feel free to share your experience. Even if you have another portable battery that’s proven to be of great use, we’d love to hear about it – drop us a comment in the section below and let us know!