Regular listeners (and now viewers) of our podcast will know that I recently moved from a Galaxy Note 2 back to the iPhone 5. I won’t go into the reasons why here, as it’s worth a good article on it’s own.
On the whole, I’m happy with that decision, but there are two things I really miss about the Note 2. 1) The massive, B-E-A-U-tiful screen, and 2) the outstanding battery life. Now, short of buying some expensive, ill performing projector there isn’t much I can do about the former. The latter, however, is a different story, and that’s where this device comes in.
I’ve always found battery cases a bit pricey, quite ugly, and fat. This one though, whilst still adding bulk to the iPhone, is crafted in such a way that it really doesn’t feel like you’re carrying a brick around. Having said that, I didn’t mind the heft of the Note 2, and some people laughed at me, so take that with a pinch of salt.
The iPhone 5 neatly slots down into the device onto the ‘lightning’ sized connecter at the bottom. The back of the charging case (the black surface on the left picture) is a soft fabric material to protect the back of the iPhone from scratches. Good stuff!
The lights at the bottom show 25, 50, 75 and 100 to indicate how much charge the battery has left. Either when charging (The battery charges by USB, a lead is included in the pack) or discharging (when the iPhone is attached.) Once the iPhone is inserted, the silver ‘on’ button in the bottom left ‘activates’ charging and the iPhone will show the charging symbol. The bottom of the device has a cut through hole for your headphones and speakers, which replace the iPhone speakers when the case is attached. They sound about the same to me when in use.
In my tests, it managed to charge my iPhone 5 from 4% to 94% in two hours and twenty minutes. It was still registering over 25% power left at this point! The battery itself takes about 3 hours to fully charge over USB.
There’s also a nifty stand, so you can soak up lots of lovely TV shows / movies on the train without having to worry about running out of juice.
In all, I really liked this case. There is only one problem with it, and that really depends on how you intend to use it. Have a look at this picture and see if you can guess what I’m talking about..
Yes, we’ve been over this before with other cases. The ‘cut-out’ for the camera is way too small. Fine if you’re taking pictures in good lighting conditions, but awful if you need to use the flash. Here is a good example. The right hand side image is completely destroyed.
Now if this were an ordinary case, this would be a deal breaker. Having said that, you don’t need to keep this case on all of the time. Just whilst it’s charging, and given that it charges to near capacity in just over two hours (plus you can always whip the phone out if you desperately need to use the flash) I’m tempted to forgive it, just slightly. At £34-97 it’s great value for money, and I would say essential for anyone travelling / commuting / camping etc.
I will most certainly be making good use of it whilst roaming around Barcelona for MWC!
Thanks to Mobilefun for the review unit.
They have a range of iPhone cases and iPhone 5 battery cases