Everyone needs charging. Our bodies need it when we are drained; plants need it so that they can grow without any hindrance; our minds need it so they can be more prolific. But what needs more energy than anything else, considering the lifestyle we live today, are our smartphones and gadgets.
Yes! It’s true
Our smartphones have become necessities in our lives. Google Maps, WhatsApp, and other communication apps have become an essential part of our day to life. Hell, you need your smartphone even to book a cab!
We have all experienced a dying phone, especially while traveling. A portable external battery pack is just what you need to rejuvenate your gadgets.
While there are tons of options available for a power bank, your decision should entirely be based on your consumption and requirements.
Whether you are hiking in the woods for days or commuting to work every day, there is a suitable option available at your service.
You can find battery packs ranging anywhere between 3000mA to 30,000 mA. A 3000 mA battery pack has enough power to more than double your phone’s battery life provided the battery pack is 100% full.
It is usually advised not to plug in your gadgets for charging when you are charging the power bank. But once your power bank is fully loaded you can let your phones/tablets/speakers leech off the juices of the power bank.
Parameters to consider before buying a power bank
There are several factors you should evaluate before pinning down the power bank you want to invest it.
High potential or compact?
Usually, the power banks with high capacity (like 20,000 mA to 30,000 mA) are heavier than the power banks with lesser potential. So you need to decide whether you want your backup power bank to be portable or high in capacity or both (difficult to get this deal, though).
Usually, a smartphone has a 2000mAh battery. This means if you have a basic power bank of 2000mAh you will be able to charge your phone once.
Going higher in capacity will allow you to charge your phones multiple times. But this comes at the cost of portability.
Higher power banks also cost a bomb.
Gadget’s input current value
It is also advisable to check your mobile device’s input current since this is directly proportional to the amount of time your phone will take to charge.
Many users have complained that it takes longer to charge their phone via power bank as compared to the wall-mounted sockets.
Most phones draw as much as 1 mA to charge at a normal speed. If your phone output requires more than 1 mA, then you should consider getting a power bank which can give the output accordingly.
The same goes for your tablets and iPads. iPad Air, for instance, draws 2.4 mA to charge. If you were to plug this in a 1 mA output USB port of the power bank, it is highly likely that your iPad will refuse to charge. Or it may charge at the speed of a snail.
So if you have an iPad or a tablet, consider getting a power bank that can throw at least 2.5 mA. In fact, your iPhones will charge faster if you use a higher output power bank.
How many ports?
Check how many devices you are carrying. If you travel with more than one gadget, then you could consider getting a power bank with more than one USB ports. But you must not ignore the fact that the greater the number of ports, the higher the cost of the power bank.
Usually, power banks with more than one USB input can output around 2 mA of current in each port. So the total output when you are simultaneously charging more than one device will be around 3 mA (not 4 mA since some energy is lost in the conversion from higher voltage to lower voltage supply).
This further means each of your devices gets around 1.5 mA of current. So both your gadgets should charge at a decent pace.
If you are a forgetful person, then you should definitely invest in a power bank with in-built USB cable.
Quality or money?
Everyone loves an inexpensive buy. But when it comes to technological purchases, it is better to invest in a branded reputable product than buying a cheap makeshift gadget from the flea market.
Poor quality of the power bank can affect the charging of your gadget adversely. It can mess up the original battery of your phone. Some users have also complained about overheating of their phones.
The battery packs can burst and cause major damage to you and the surrounding area. So it is always advisable to choose quality over the price.
Think of all the important features missing in your power bank fabricated after excessive cost cutting.
So what’s the bottom line?
Here’s a list of a few things you need to jot down before making your purchase.
- Find out the mA required by your device. Get a higher output (at least 2.1 mA) power bank if you want to charge your iPad. The iPhone will still filter only 1
- When will you be using your power bank most? While traveling to a place like the Spiti Valley or just doing the daily up and down commute from home to work and back?
- Carrying multiple devices or just one? It is always good to have an extra port.
- Need any extra add-ons? Like built-in power cable, LED flashlights, USB hotspot and so on.
You work on those questions, and you won’t be confused in the pool of options available for power banks. You will be able to make a thoughtful and wise investment and get the best power bank for yourself.
Usually, you will come across many kids selling such items in fancy colors at traffic signals. These products are usually fake and will end up damaging your gadgets.