Best Portable Phone Chargers, Power Banks, and External Battery Packs

Make low battery warnings a thing of the past by carrying a portable phone charger with you while away from home. Pack a powerful battery for long trips or a compact battery for your everyday errands. Portable chargers, power banks, and external battery packs are all synonymous. When your device’s battery is draining and you can’t afford a dead phone, these are the solution. Sizes and weights range from as small as lipstick to a a few decks of cards and they can all truly save your life in a time of need. Below is a list of reliable and recommended portable phone chargers.


 

Most Compact

Less than $20.00

Lipstick-Sized

Charge one device at a time

3,350 mAh

Best Value

Around $40.00

A little larger than a deck of cards

Charge two devices at a time

13,400 mAh

Most Powerful

Around $70.00

Larger than two decks of cards

Charge two devices at a time

26,800 mAh


How Do They Work?

The external battery pack is charged independently of your phone or tablet by simply plugging it into a wall outlet like any other electronic device. While away from home, carry both the fully-charged  battery pack and a charging cable for your device. In a time of need, connect your device to the battery pack. The power from the battery pack is transferred to your phone, tablet, or other device thus charging its battery. Recharge and reuse the battery pack as needed.

Better than Cases with Batteries Built In?

There are cases designed specifically for different smartphones with a portable external battery built right into the case. These are essentially the same exact product but custom fit for your phone. This type of case is incredibly convenient because you do not have to worry about forgetting your battery pack at home. However, they add significant size and weight to your slim and sleek smartphone. As to which solution is better, that is entirely your preference.


Choosing the Right Solution

  1. Battery Capacity (Number of Charges)
    • Battery capacity is measured in milliamp Hour (mAh). For example, the battery inside the iPhone 7 has just under 2,000 mAh. If you were to buy an external battery pack with 10,000 mAh, we might assume that means it could charge an iPhone 7 five times before needing to be recharged. This is not entirely accurate because it is not an immediate transfer of energy plus we tend to continue using our phones while it is being charged. It is safer to aim low and round down to set proper expectations. Some use 65-70% as an estimate. The length of time you will be away from a standard wall charger and/or the number of devices you need to keep charged will help you determine what mAh is best for you.
  2. Size and Weight
    • Size and weight are directly related to the battery capacity (mAh) of an external battery pack. High-capacity batteries will weigh more and lower-capacity batteries will therefore weigh less and can be more compact. Consider how you will carry your external battery pack before making your purchase.
  3. Connections
    • Larger battery packs may offer multiple USB ports allowing you to charge more than one device simultaneously. How many devices will you need to charge at one time?

Recommended Solution

Buy one high-capacity battery pack for longer travels. Buy one compact battery pack per person for everyday use.


 

The Best External Battery Packs

Anker PowerCore+ mini

– 3,350 mAh
– Size: 3.7 × 0.9 × 0.9 in
– Weight: 76.5 g / 2.7 oz
– Good for phones but not for tablets
– Recharges in 3-4 hours
– 1 USB Port
– Colors: Black, Blue, Pink, Gold

Anker PowerCore 5000

– Less than $20.00
– 5,000 mAh
– Size: 4.2 x 1.3 x 1.3 in
– Weight: 136 g / 4.8 oz
– Recharges in 2-3 hours
– 1 USB Port
– Colors: Black, White

Anker PowerCore+ 10050 QC

– Less than $40.00
– 10,050 mAh
– Size: 3.7 x 2.4 x 0.9 in
– Weight: 236 g / 8.32 oz
– Recharges in 4-5 hours
– 1 USB Port
– Colors: Black, White, Silver, Gold

Anker PowerCore+ 13400 QC

– 13,400 mAh
– Size: 3.9 x 3.1 x 0.9 in
– Weight: 306 g / 10.79 oz
– Recharges in 5-6 hours
– 2 USB Ports
– Colors: Black, White, Silver, Gold

Anker PowerCore Speed 20000 QC

– Around $50
– 20,000 mAh
– Size: 6.5 x 3.1 x 0.9 in
– Weight: 369 g / 13 oz
– Recharges in 10-12 hours
– 2 USB Ports
– Colors: Black

Anker PowerCore+ 26800 QC

– Around $70
– 26,800 mAh
– Size: 7.1 x 3.1 x 0.9 in
– Weight: 1.3 pounds
– Recharges in 6-8 hours
– 3 USB Ports
– Colors: Black

Best Portable Phone Chargers, Power Banks, and External Battery Packs

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