Portable Chargers & Pokemon Go

The latest update to Pokemon Go removed a feature that was used to save battery power, making it more important for everyone to go out and buy a portable USB charger so they can hunt for longer.

If you want to buy a charger there are a few things that you should consider first — don’t just buy whats right in front of you or the cheapest available at the time. Here is some of the things you should consider:

Size & Weight

You are going to be carrying this device around with you a lot so do you really want it to be super bulky? Before you buy the device pick it up and see how it feels, see if it will fit in your pocket. Be aware of any that have power buttons that you may bump on and accidentally drain the device.

Your Device’s Charging Port

If you own an Apple Device there are several very neat portable chargers that are small, reasonable capacity and have a lightning cable built into the device (for example http://www.mophie.com/shop/universal-batteries/power-reserve-lightning)

However — the above unit I’ve linked to will only charge a lightning device. If you want to charge multiple device go for something that has just USB ports available so you can plug in any device using your own charging cable

Capacity

Always look at the capacity of your devices battery and the capacity of the charge bank you intend on buying. The general rule for figuring out charges per charge bank is Capacity of Charge Bank divided by Capacity of your devices Battery (which you can find by googling the device specs, or if its a device you can remove the battery from — on the battery itself)

For example this charger — one of my favourites for portability https://www.studioproper.com.au/products/backup-battery-for-iphone-and-ipad has a capacity rating of 9000mAh. The iPhone 6+ has a rating of 2915mAh so if we do that calculation we could expect that charger to charge the device roughly 3.087 times.

Be aware though that more often then not you will only get about 80% of that maximum output of the charger as obviously if your device is on and doing certain tasks (catching Pokemon for example) its power draw will be larger than when it is at idle.

Supply Current

Be cautious of devices that can only support 1A or 1.5A outputs as well. If you have an iPad and try to charge it off one of these ports it is going to take a long time. Many devices now come with both a 1A and a 2.1A port — choose the port according to the device you are charging. If you are unsure of which one to use look on your wall charger as often it will say the amp rating the device uses.

Charge time & Charge Indicators

These devices generally will take some time to be charged fully, if you are planning on going out with one of these devices make sure you plan ahead to ensure your device is full of juice for when your device starts going flat.

It is also a great idea to make sure your portable charger has status lights that can indicate how charged the device is so that you can easily check how much power is still available in the bank at any time

To Sum it all up

Look for devices that are easy to cart around, high capacity and suitable for your devices. Don’t be fooled into thinking that bigger is better because quite often it is not. For example look at this http://www.tp-link.com.au/products/details/TL-PB10400.html versus the Studio Proper charger I linked to earlier. The TP-Link is higher capacity and can charge two devices, but do you really want to carry something chunky around when you can get the compact Studio Proper Charger?

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