Which power bank is the best for you? There are more things to consider than just the capacity and price.
A power bank is a portable, battery-powered, rechargeable device that can be used to charge a variety of electronic devices.
At first, picking up a power bank for your smartphone or tablet should be an easy and enjoyable task. But when you start looking for options, doubts start to pop in.
The following list will help you decide which power bank is best suited for your current and future needs.
I will guide you through the list of the essential power bank tech specs, travel and flight conditions, main power bank types, most popular brands in the power bank category, and, finally, your own reasons to buy a power bank.
Remember one thing. There are thousands of power bank models on the web (over one thousand power banks are available on Amazon only). There is only one power bank that’s best suited for unique needs.
Why should I buy a power bank – 7 reasons
Power banks are incredibly convenient since they can be taken anywhere and used to charge devices on the go.
2. Peace of mind
When you have a power bank with you, you can always sure your smartphone won’t die right at the moment when you most need it. Say “bye” to random power outlets.
Power banks are designed to be durable and long-lasting. You will be able to use a single power bank with your current and future devices.
Power banks are designed to be lightweight and portable, making them a great accessory for trips, holidays, and – especially – camping tours.
Power banks come in a variety of shapes, sizes, and capacities. Many combine several features. You will be able to use a single power bank with many (if not all) mobile devices.
6. Cost Effectiveness
Power banks are an affordable way to keep your devices charged without the need to buy multiple chargers.
Contemporary power banks are designed to be safe to use and include numerous safety features like overcharge protection.
Which power bank should I choose?
Here are a few questions you should ask yourself before you start exploring online stores.
Always compare the recommendations you find online with your own needs. The power bank you want to buy is the one you will be using, not the author of a fancy YouTube review.
Do I need a power bank for more than one device?
If you are looking for a power bank not only for your smartphone but also a smartwatch, ear phones, or a tablet, you should consider getting the one with higher capacity, and with several output ports.
Do I want to fix the cable problem?
The problem with charging is that there are different ports for different devices: micro USD, USB-C, Lightning, etc.
If you want to forget about which cables to take, you can pick up a power bank with built-in cables for almost any port combination.
Does my smartphone come with wireless charging support?
If yes, you can consider getting a power bank with a wireless charging pad. This way, you can forget about keeping a charging cable always with you.
Do I travel by plane a lot?
Are you looking for a power bank that you could use on the board of a passenger plane? Keep in mind that most airlines allow to keep in your carry-on luggage the power bank that’s up to 27000mAh.
Do I need a power bank for emergencies?
Are you going to buy a battery pack that will provide energy when you don’t have access to a power outlet? Solar power banks seem like a good choice, but I recommend getting a high-capacity power bank instead.
Do I need to quickly recharge a power bank?
Power banks are a way to quickly recharge your other devices, but they also have to be recharged. And sometimes it takes too much time.
If the power bank recharge speed is your concern, you should go for a power bank with a fast USB-C input or input/output port.
Do you have too many accessories already?
If your accessory bag is already packed with a must-have gear, you can consider replacing some of them with accessories that combine several features, for instance an AC plug, cable set, radio, SOS alarm, weather alert, or flashlight.
Power banks – main tech specs to consider
Here are the parameters to keep in mind when choosing a power bank:
It’s measured in milliampere hours (mAh). It shows the power bank’s maximum charge that can be transferred by a steady current of one milliampere flowing for one hour. The bigger the capacity, the more times you will be able to charge your device.
▸ Power output
It’s measured in watts (W). It shows the power bank’s maximum rate of energy transfer. Tablets need chargers with higher power output. So, even if the power adapter has a high capacity, it may not be able to charge your tablet if it has a low-power output.
▸ Power delivery
This is the USB port related specification showing how fast a specific port can be in charging the devices with greater power demand. Usually, the fastest power delivery is provided by USB-C ports.
▸ Output ports
The number and kind of ports used to charge connected devices. Please keep in mind that in some power banks USB-C ports work only one way – to charge the power bank itself. That’s why it’s important to double-check if the USB-C port is “two-way,” ”in-out,” or “input-output.”
▸ Input ports
The number and kind of ports used to charge the power bank itself. Some ports in a single power bank can be used for both input and output – but some for input only. You should analyze which port serves which purpose if you want to avoid disappointment.
▸ Pass-through technology
If you find this phrase in the description, it means that the power bank is capable of charging the connected devices while it’s connected to the wall power socket.
Power banks – travel and flight information
Power banks use lithium-ion batteries, which are liable to catch fire. Therefore, it is prohibited to put them in the check-in luggage (the luggage you leave at the airport to take to the cargo space of the plane).
However, you can keep two power banks in your carry-on luggage (the small luggage you take with you to the plane’s cabin). Their combined capacity should not exceed 27000mAh.
For instance, you can have in your carry-on luggage:
- One power bank with a capacity 25000mAh, or
- Two power banks – one with 6000mAh and one with 20000mAh capacity
If you want to take with you on board the power bank that’s capable of charging your tablet, you should pick up the one that has the capacity below 27000mAh but power output 20W or higher.
What are the main types of power banks?
▸ Plug-in power bank
This kind of power bank can be attached directly to the device, so there is no need to take a connecting cable.
Such power banks are extremely compact and are usually designed to work with specific phone models.
▸ Solar power bank
A solar power bank comes equipped with a solar panel or panels. Its main benefit is a possibility to recharge itself when you can’t access a wall power outlet.
You have to keep in mind that solar charging is unstable, takes a lot of time, and depends on weather conditions and the placement of the power bank.
▸ High-capacity battery pack
A high-capacity power bank offers more than 50000mAh, and is capable of recharging your devices multiple times.
It typically comes with multiple input and output ports so that you can recharge several devices simultaneously.
The biggest problem with high-capacity power banks is their big size and weight.
▸ Wireless charging power bank
More and more power banks come with a wireless charging pad, allowing you to recharge your smartphone without cables.
Most wireless power banks are compatible with Qi-enabled devices, not only smartphones, but also earphones or smartwatches.
▸ Multi-purpose power bank
A growing sub-category of power banks includes devices that combine different features, making them a handy replacement of several single-purpose devices.
An innovative power bank can provide AC plug, built-in cables, flashlight, LED display, and a waterproof design.
What are the main power bank producers?
Anker is a leading brand of power banks and battery packs. The company offers several power bank models for various needs.
Anker power banks offer advanced safety features and are designed to provide reliable performance as well as long-lasting use.
Anker’s power supply products have consistently been rated highly by both consumers and tech reviewers.
Charmast has a good reputation for producing quality power banks.
The brand is known for their reliable, durable, and high-capacity power banks. If you are looking for the most innovative power banks on the market, you should check out Charmast.
Romoss makes some of the best power banks on the market. The company’s tagline is “charging master”.
Their power banks are designed to be slim and lightweight, yet capable of providing a reliable and powerful charge for your devices. They also feature advanced safety features to ensure your devices and data remain safe.
Baseus offers a wide range of products such as phone cases, chargers, audio accessories, and data cables. Power banks are among the company’s most popular products.
The brand is known for its stylish and modern design, and for its commitment to quality and innovation.
What are the best power banks?
Below, you will find a few best power banks that are currently available on Amazon. The selection is based on the products’ specs and ratings.
Affordable power bank with four built-in cables and hand loop
▸ Are you looking for an affordable power bank that will recharge your smartphone and most other small mobile devices, old and new, at no extra cost? Take a look at this slim, 10000mAh power charger that costs less than $20.
▸ The biggest benefit of this particular battery pack is about connection options. You won’t need to buy extra cables with specific plugs for specific devices because four built-in cables provide most output options.
▸ The power bank comes with cables featuring the following plugs: Lightning, micro USB, USB-C, and USB-A. Thanks to that, you will recharge all your devices, current and future.
▸ A clever thing about this power bank is the Lightning cable that doubles as a hand loop. Plus, there is also a small LED screen that displays the current battery status.
Innovative 5-in-1, 10000mAh power bank charger
▸ From Charmast comes an innovative battery pack that offers five features in one: 10000mAh compact-size power bank, USB-C port for both input and output, LED display with a remaining battery capacity, built-in cables (Lightning, USB-C, and micro USB), and – most importantly – a built-in, foldable, AC plug.
▸ You can plug the power bank directly to the wall socket for fast recharging without the need to use any cables. What’s more, while the power bank sits in the wall, you will be able to recharge the connected devices, so it works like a power strip.
▸ The built-in cables let you charge even three devices simultaneously. Please note that, while the iPad is shown in the visualization, you will only be able to partially recharge it, as the power bank’s capacity is too low.
Powerful, 60000mAh 22.5W battery pack
▸ With the capacity at 60000mAh, this battery pack beast from Romoss is among the most powerful power banks that are currently offered online.
▸ The producer claims that on average you can use it for three weeks on one charge. You can recharge the power bank with the 9V 2A power adapter in less than 16 hours.
▸ Romoss offers 22.5W power output (enough for most tablets) and PD 3.0 fast charging via USB-C port. It can recharge your phone several times.
▸ While looking pretty slim, this power bank is not lightweight. It weighs 2.9 pounds (1.32 kg). The red-colored LED display will let you check out the charging status, voltage, and remaining battery level.
25W power bank with wireless charging pad
▸ This slim and lightweight power bank combines the almost perfect set of features designed for the heavy user of mobile devices.
▸ The power bank comes with a wireless charging pad, so when it comes to the latest smartphone models, you don’t even need a cable. The wireless charging offers 5, 7.5, 10, and maximum 15W power output, and can fast charge most other Qi-enabled devices.
▸ What’s more, the battery pack offers 5 simultaneous charging outputs. The 25W output/input is performed by USB-C port. 33800mAh is enough to fully recharge your phone up to 10 times.
Power banks and battery packs – useful links
▸ Best power banks for iPhone and iPad – In this overview, you will find high-capacity, multiple-port, USB-C PD enabled power banks tested to work seamlessly with iPhone, iPad, or both.
▸ 5 reasons not to buy a solar power bank – Are you planning to buy an accessory that could provide energy in case of emergency or when you don’t have access to a power outlet? Don’t pick up solar power banks.
▸ Must-have iPad camping accessories – Here are a few accessories that will keep your iPad and iPhone more functional, always charged, and protected from the elements.
▸ Smartest gadgets to buy this year – Check out the updated list of cool, unique, smart gadgets that have one thing in common – they are more useful than you think.
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