Nowadays our gadgets are becoming increasingly smaller and lighter so that they can easily be carried in our pockets. It is interesting that in the past 2 decades there has been an incredible demand for transportable gadgets. For example, mobile phones, which were earlier on quite cumbersome and bulky are now smart (thus called smartphones). However, with enhanced smartphones as well as an enormous boost of their usage comes also the necessity to charge them all the time. Thereby, many firms have started introducing power banks onto the market.
So what are the three things we need to know about battery packs or power banks?
- What exactly is a power bank?
A portable power bank is a transportable charger for devices. As we said, smartphones, tablets, laptops, as well as cameras need power after a while and power outlets are not readily available everywhere we go. So, a power bank is actually an external or additional charger for your phone as well as for other electronic gadgets and devices.
Power banks are charged in 3 ways: a USB computer port, by way of a charger which usually comes with the phone, or by the use of another power bank. As for USB charging, some battery packs have a built in USB capability for charging (mostly newer power banks, not older models), with a cable that comes with the device but which is separate. This, of course, adds to the number of situations which can go wrong in the usage of the power bank, as some people forget or lose their cable and then they cannot use the power banks to charge their smartphones. But, when the the device is charged in full, then the cable is without difficulty tucked into the power bank. Thus, for the process of charging a device, what is done is the adapter is taken out and plugged into the correct slot. Also, the higher quality battery packs come with connectors for a variety of device sorts, as for example, Apple, Sony Ericsson, LG, Nokia, Huawei, Samsung, and others.
The time for charging depends of the power capacity of the power bank, which is measured in mAh, or milliamp Hour or milli Ampere Hour (a unit which measures electrical power over a certain period of time, usually measuring the capacity of the energy of a battery – the more mAh there are, the better the capacity is). Thus, the great the mAh rating is, the greater the power capacity of the bank. Which leads to the second thing we need to know about power banks:
- The power output and the power capacity.
The power output of a battery pack is extremely relevant, as a power bank requires a minimum of 2 ampere to charge. So for every power pack which you wish to purchase, its capacity needs to be 2.5 times greater than your phone’s capacity. For instance, if our phone battery is 4,000mAh, we need to purchase a power bank which is 10,000 mAh, as approximately 6,700 mAh is used for charging. This is better than buying the one with the same mAh with your phone.
So basically, it should be noted that if we decide to buy a portable charger, the usage of our phones should be kept in mind. In our time, due to huge demands by consumers, also available are 8,400mAh and 10,400mAh units, and there are chargers which can power up nearly any type of device (including iPads, laptops, iPods, mobile phones from diverse companies, as well as tablets).
For example, here is a list of power bank capacity and charging capacity:
- 1,500mAh battery: smartphone – one complete charge.
- 5,600mAh battery: smartphone – two to three and a half complete charges. Ipad – about 40%.
- 10,000mAh battery: smartphone – four complete charges. Ipad – 100% complete charge.
The third thing we need to know about power banks is the following:
- The price and the quality.
Along with the power capacity or the strength of the battery of the power bank, another item that can help us make rational decisions about purchasing such devices and gadgets (or better said, the chargers for the mentioned) is the price of the power bank. It is par for the course that we should not purchase a portable battery bank which fails to include some basic features such as for example, protection for overcharging, short circuits, as well as for temperature.
So if we are seeking for a portable battery pack or power bank, it is really and truly recommended not to go for the option which is the cheapest. It is not just a saying, but we really get what we pay for, and we can conclude that a mid-range to an upper range price is a great option, without sacrificing quality.
We must conclude that the reason for purchasing a battery pack is that it is a portable charger, thus charging your devices. Sure, there are cheap power banks with allegedly a large capacity, although it is quite possible that they will fail to power up your gadgets suitably or even break down.
And last but not least – a power bank’s brand is very important, and we are all familiar with the dependable brands which are popular by their durability, quality as well as resale value. Even though some of the brands can be quite expensive, at least there is a guarantee that they will be used for quite a while.