I hate being tied down to mains plugs sockets – it’s one of the most annoying things that occur when I am off on my travels. It really does annoy me, to the extent that when I was looking for a new computer I made sure I could charge it via USB Type C. However it is not quite as simple as that as I soon discovered.
If you are going to be getting a relatively low powered laptop running one of the older generations of Atom processors, then yeah standard USB Type C may be enough to charge your device when it is not being used. This can also be true for systems that are using the 1st generation of Intel Core M3. However, as soon as you move into the wheelhouse of the more modern systems and step up to Intel Core I processors then things get a little bit trickier. Your standard phone charger (unless you own a Pixel or Pixel 2) is just not going to cut it. This is down to the fact that the cells of the battery require more throughput than USB Type C in its standard guise can deliver. This is where USB Type Power Delivery comes in. This allows for enough throughput to charge the higher capacity cells that are to be found in modern laptops.
Here is a small chart to try and explain the difference between the currently existing standards
As you can see, there is a large disparity between the latest iteration of Type C 1.2 and Type C PD (or USB PD as it is on the chart). While that is all very interesting, here’s why is it important for you or me as a user of mobile devices. The reason it is important is that we now have the ability to get sufficiently powerful battery packs to allow us to charge our high spec laptops, and in some cases phones via this new standard of Type C PD. This is where this beast from Anker comes in!
What we have here is the Anker PowerCore+ 26800. It is a portable battery pack that has a capacity of 26800mAh and has the capability to charge up your ultrabook whilst you are on the go – hurrah! Not only does it have the Power Delivery standard but it also has two USB 3 outputs for faster charging using their IQ charging system. So, in this case, I can have my laptop charging and also be juicing up my phone at the same time. Now, this may result in me not being able to achieve a full charge on my laptop, given that the battery capacity is being split between both the phone and the laptop, but it is definitely really useful when I am out and about on my trips to media events. In all honesty, I have not actually had ample opportunity to run any sort of serious testing of this yet as I have not had any sort of trips to go on. However, at the end of the month, I am going away for a day or two and I will not be taking my power lead with me for my laptop!
In the meantime here is an unboxing of the PowerCore+ for you to enjoy.
As I said above I have not had much chance to really put this through its paces. I am going to try and use this as my main source of power for my laptop for the next few weeks and then report back here. I have done one charging test on my laptop and it drained the PowerCore+ by half, which is pretty good going if I am honest. The laptop also only took a few hours to charge as well.
Here are some nice pictures of the out of box experience for you enjoy until I can get the full review done.