5V battery power supply. 5v battery power supply

Things You Need to Know Before Buying A Power Bank

Back in 2001, the prototype of a power bank appeared in CES. Since then, the power bank market has grown phenomenally and today, you can find hundreds of different brands on the market. There are so many to choose from, with capacities ranging from 500mAh to 30,000mAh, single or multiple USB ports, with or without a flashlight, etc. Earlier this year, several mobile phone manufacturers including Xiaomi, Samsung and Nokia launched their wireless power banks, making the market even more competitive.

The choice is bewildering, and it’s not like you can just ‘fish a power bank out of the sea’. Yes ok, there are lots of tips and guides out there, but today we are going to see how the tech gurus make their choice. You might even get a fringe benefit.

What Does A Quality Power Bank Look Like?

The easiest and quickest way to judge the quality of a power bank is to check the quality of its case. What materials are used? How well is it designed? Are there any signs of damage? Is the button easy to press?

A quality power bank should have:

1) A clean and complete surface, nothing out of shape. There should be no signs of mechanical damage, no corrosion on any of the connectors.

2) Clear markings about the power ratings, avoid anything blurry that you cannot read.

3) Make sure any buttons and lights work correctly.

It Should Have These Numbers

Every power bank should have markings which clearly state what the power ratings are. That will help you to understand if it can properly charge your phone or not.

1) The basic information should be illustrated on the product or in the user manual; this usually includes the capacity, model number, product type, manufacturers’ information, etc.

2) The Rated input voltage/current and the output voltage/current information is fundamental. But what do these numbers mean? The rated input tells you the standard voltage that the power adapter can connect to so that it can charge the power bank.

If you lose the original power adapter, you could buy a third party one that matches instead of the original. The rated output has to match with the output voltage of the original power adapter for your phone. It’s not recommended to charge your phone with a power bank that has different voltages; otherwise, you may well damage your phone.

3) How many times can the full power bank charge my phone? That’s the question a lot of you will want to know. Usually, that sort of information is not written on the power bank, but with rated capacity and cell/battery rated energy, you can do the math yourself. Don’t worry. We will get to that later.

4) Last but not least, the markings about safety certification are also significant. Most electronics products will bear signs of CE, RoHs and FCC. CE and RoHs are required if the product is sold in the EU; while FCC is mandatory for US market. Safety is somehow guaranteed if you see those marks on the power bank.

You will probably find other markings too, such as environmental information. If you are passionate about these environmental factors, you might want to choose a power bank with a ‘cyclic regeneration mark’ which means that it is recyclable.

Know the Conversion Game of Power Banks

You probably know that bigger capacity is better since it can provide more energy. The thing is, there are two different types of capacity: battery capacity and rated capacity. What you usually see on power banks are the battery capacity. What’s the difference between those two numbers? Let’s read on.

1) How many times can the power bank charge your phone?

If a power bank is marked as 10,000mAh 3.8V (38Wh), that means its battery capacity is 10,000mAh, the voltage of the battery core is 3.8V, and the battery core energy is 38Wh.

Rated capacity (mAh): Also known as nameplate capacity, is the least output capacity under the rated voltage and current.

For example, the rated capacity of a power bank is 7,000mAh (TYP5.1V 1A), that means the minimum output capacity of the power bank is 7,000mAh in the charging process with 5.1V and 1A output standard.

Conversion efficiency: This indicates the value difference between the battery core energy and rated capacity.

A power bank has a battery capacity as 10,000mAh; the battery core voltage is 3.8V which will increase to 5.1V when it’s charging a phone. So, in theory, its output capacity is:

10,000 3.8 / 5.1 = 7,450mAh

The rated capacity is 7,000mAh (TYP5.1V 1A), so the rated conversion efficiency is:

battery, power, supply

7,000 / 7,450 = 93.96%

In other words, the energy conversion efficiency is about 93.96%, with a 5.1V 1A output standard. About 6.04% of the power is lost in the conversion. If you use professional tools to test the rated output capacity, the result would not be too different. The conversion efficiency of most of the power banks on the market are between 80~90%. Therefore, a power bank with 10,000 battery capacity has about 6,000~7,000 rated output capacity.

Charging rate: 7,000mAh (rated capacity of the power bank) / 3,110mAh (capacity of the iPhone 11 battery) =2.25

Therefore, it can charge your iPhone 11 twice at best.

2) How long will the power bank last?

The lifespan of a power bank depends on two things: how well the power bank is made and how much you use it. The number of charge-discharge cycles, decided by the battery core and other vital components, varies amongst power banks. Typically, this is between 300 ~ 1,000 cycles and if you want my advice, you should definitely avoid any power bank that has less than 500 charge cycles.

battery, power, supply

Say, the power bank has 500 charge cycles, and you fully charge it once per day on average, then how long it will last? We can work that out with the following simple formula:

Power bank lifespan = Charge cycles charging rate / using rate

Where ‘Using rate’ is the number of times you charge the power bank fully in a day.

As mentioned above, for a 10,000mAh power bank, its charging rate is about 2.25. If it has 500 charging cycles, its lifespan is:

500 2.25 / 1 = 1125 days = 3.08 years

But where can these charging cycles be found, you may ask? The test of cycle life involves specific equipment, so for now, we’ll just have to skip that.

But, if you really want to know, ask the seller before you purchase. Even if you don’t get an answer, as you can see from the above example, the power bank will last longer if it has more capacity and a lower use rate. So, it makes sense to go for a big power bank and use it slowly, that way, you should be able to keep for a couple of years if not more.

3) How long does it take to charge the power bank or the phone fully?

Now comes the easy part. The charging time depends on the capacity of the powered device (PD) and its input current which equals the output current of the power sourcing device (PSD)

Charging time = battery capacity / actual input current.

Take a 10,000mAh power bank to demonstrate. Its rated input is 5V/2A, so if you use a 5V/1A power adapter to charge it, its actual input current is 1A=1,000mAh. 10,000mAh /1,000mAh=10 hours. If you use a 5V/2A power adapter, it takes 5 hours to fully charge the power bank: 10,000mAh / 2A (2,000mAh) = 5 hours.

Same for charging the phone. If your phone battery has 4,000mAh capacity, and the maximum output current of the power bank is 2.5A (input current for the phone is 2.5A) then it takes about 1.6 hours to fully charge your phone with the power bank.

How Safe is the Power Bank?

You cannot be too more careful with electronic devices, including power banks. They should have protection mechanisms to prevent any danger caused by electricity.

There are several underlying protection mechanisms: over-current protection, under-voltage protection, short-circuit protection, over-temperature protection and overvoltage protection. This information can usually be found in the user manual.

What’s the Purpose of Power Banks?

By now, you are probably a power bank expert to some extent. But can you count on all those numbers to consider a purchase? Not really. Knowing everything about a power bank can help you decide the quality, but the quality is not the only standard to define a “good” product. It also has to do what you want.

Yes, high-capacity power banks have a longer lifespan and higher charging rate, however, a high capacity also means a bigger size. Do you want to carry a bulky phone power bank in your small bag? Some of you will be shaking your head. If you want to carry an emergency power supply for your phone when you are out shopping, then a small-sized power bank is best. However, if you are a selfie addict, an extra 30% energy from the power bank may not be enough for your day out. You see, everyone has different needs.

Therefore, the first step to select a power bank is to figure out what kind of power bank you want, then compare power banks of the same type with what you’ve learned above.

If you happen to be looking for a power bank for an emergency power supply, check out this recommendation –

PITAKA MagEZ Battery Pack, a MagSafe compatible wireless charging power bank.

The MagEZ Battery Pack is a perfectly formed, small-sized, wireless power bank with 4000mAh capacity that can provide an additional 60% energy for your iPhone 14, perfect for your everyday carry and emergency use. With magnets embedded within, it matches flawlessly with MagSafe phone cases. It can auto attach and align with your iPhone 12, iPhone 13, and iPhone 14 series, safely and securely.

importantly, the MagSafe battery pack is compatible with our MagEZ Slider, a multi-device charging station that can work as a phone stand and charges your phone and Airpods. With the Slider, you can slide the power bank in the dock when it’s not used, so you won’t misplace or forget to charge the power bank anymore.

In conclusion

You don’t have to be a tech guru to select what you want but, you should know the essential tech behind a power bank if you are going to buy one. Don’t be fooled by the salesman, do your research and you have a bigger chance to get a power bank that’s worth it. Nothing could go amiss.

How to Power Your Raspberry Pi With a Battery

Often, when doing a project based on a Raspberry Pi, the main goal is to make it portable. Thus, we find ways to make it work unplugged. In this tutorial, we will talk about how to power a Raspberry Pi with a battery.

I’ve been using the Raspberry Pi for years now, and hands down, the best part is that you can bring it anywhere. It is a tiny computer the size of your hand, so having it connected to a power outlet kind of defeats its purpose.

With batteries connected, you can set up a web server for sensors in an open field, apply machine learning to a CCTV, or even control actuators from anywhere in the house. Now, the only drawback in using batteries is that you have to start minding power consumption. But that’s perfectly doable, as we will see in this tutorial.

The first thing you need to do is to choose the correct Raspberry Pi.

Choosing the Right Raspberry Pi

The latest Raspberry Pi 4 B is a beast among single board computers. It has a quad-core processor, a gigabit Ethernet port, USB3, which supports two 4k displays, but consumes a whopping 6.25Wh.

You can use the Raspberry Pi 4 B if your application is resource intensive, but a Raspberry Pi Zero would be a better choice if you want to maximize battery life.

This table compares the power usage and power source between the Raspberry Pi 4 and the Raspberry Pi Zero:

One hour and forty-five minutes of operating time is definitely not good for a portable device. However, if you use a Raspberry Pi Zero, the results improve significantly:

Note that this is only for a single lithium battery, so there is a large room for improvement. You can add more batteries in parallel to prolong battery life. Also, the Raspberry Pi’s rated current is an average from the datasheet. The actual current readings may differ depending on your Raspberry Pi’s activity and peripherals. If you want to know the actual readings, you can use a current tester.

How to Choose the Battery Size

Using the calculations above, we can formulate a rough estimate of our device’s battery life. For instance, a 1000mAh battery would be able to power a device with a rated current of 1000mA for one hour. Similarly, a 40,000 mAh power bank would be able to power a 4A device for one hour, or 1A device for 40 hours. It’s really a compromise between your project’s power consumption and how long you need the device to be powered by a single charge.

Things to Consider

The Raspberry Pi needs to be powered with 5V DC, so we need to have a DC/DC converter to convert the 3.7V battery voltage to 5V. This means the power consumption and efficiency of the converter needs to be considered when determining battery life. Efficiency affects battery life like a multiplier, so read the datasheet and choose a good DC/DC converter carefully.

Finally, if you’re powering the Raspberry Pi with a rechargeable battery, you need to have a battery charge controller. Charge controllers regulate the incoming current and voltage to your batteries. They are used to prevent overcharging, allow you to charge your lithium batteries safely, prolonging your battery’s lifespan.

Now that you have chosen the appropriate Raspberry Pi, the correct battery size, a DC-DC converter, and a battery charge controller, we can now proceed to the possible battery setups.

There are three setups I have tried over the years. First is the minimal setup.

Charge Controller

Connect a TP4056 charge controller to a 3.7V lithium battery. Then, connect the charge controller’s output to the 5V pin and ground of the Raspberry Pi Zero. Since the Raspberry Pi operates at 3.3V, the 5V rail already has an onboard voltage regulator that creates this voltage using any input between 3.3V and 5.25V.

This setup is great for testing. Best for trying your system out for a few minutes and observe if it is working. However, I don’t recommend using this as a permanent solution. It’s because you’re basically connecting 3.7V to the 5V pin. When the battery level goes down to 3.3V, the Raspberry Pi will shut down even if the battery is not completely spent. Also, you have to disconnect the Raspberry Pi from the battery every time you’re charging, so you’ll need a toggle switch or a breadboard.

DC/DC Converter

To solve this, you need to have a MT3608 3.7V to 5V DC/DC converter that ups your 3.7V to standard 5V. Take the output from the charge controller. Connect it to the converter’s input and connect the output to the 5V pin of the Raspberry Pi. With this setup, you don’t have to worry about not making the most of your batteries. You also don’t have to disconnect the batteries every time you charge because of the built-in circuitry of DC/DC converters.

Power Boost Module

The last setup is uses the PowerBoost 1000 charger module from Adafruit. This module works like a battery charge controller and a DC/DC converter in one. No need to have separate modules. Just connect a 3.7V lithium battery, and you’ll have constant 5V output and regulated USB charging.

Hope this article has helped you setup your Raspberry Pi to run off of a battery! Feel free to leave a comment below if you have questions about anything.

Power Supply for NodeMCU with Battery Charger Boost Converter

In this tutorial, we will learn how we can make Power Supply for NodeMCU ESP8266 Board. We will also integrate a Battery Booster or Boost Converter Circuit so that NodeMCU can be operated through 3.7V Lithium-Ion Battery. The Battery can get discharged after using it for a long time, so we will also integrate a Battery Charger Circuit to the Board which has a feature of Battery Management System. Earlier we designed Power Supply for ESP32, we will redesign the same circuit here for ESP32.

Most of the Lithium-Ion Batteries available in the market can only fully charge up to 4.2V which is not enough for NodeMCU Board. So we need to convert the voltage from Battery to 5V. That is the reason why we are using a small boost converter Module made using some inductors, IC resistor. Similarly to charge the battery and manage the battery we will use TP4056 Battery Charger Module.

Apart from this we can power this circuit using 9V/12V Adapter as well. The LM7805 Voltage regulator IC limits the voltage up to 5V only. If you don’t want to power the circuit using Battery, you can use the DC Power Adapter.

Power Required By NodeMCU

Nodemcu operates at 5v 3.3V. For 3.3V there is already an LDO voltage regulator to keep the voltage steady at 3.3V. NodeMCU can be powered using Micro USB jack and VIN pin (External Supply Pin).

The power required by NodeMCU is 600mA, as ESP8266 pulls as much as 80mA during RF transmissions. During boot or Wi-Fi operation it’s drawing up to 200mA peak current. Thus supply power from Micro-USB Cable is not enough for NodeMCU Board when we are adding multiple sensors or modules to the Board. This is because Computer USB port can provide less than 500mA of current. Check more about Nodemcu Power requirement here: Nodemcu ESP8266 Datasheets

Bill of Materials

Following are the components required for making this NodeMCU Power Supply project. All the components can be easily purchased from Amazon. The component purchase link is given below.

S.N.components NameQuantity

3.7V to 5V Step-Up Boost Converter Module

This is the Step-Up DC-DC Boost converter module which provides 5V DC stable voltage output at various input ranges between 1.5V to 5V. This small tiny circuit boosts the voltage level and provides the amplified stabilized 5V output. This module operates at a frequency of modules operate at frequency 150KHZ. For the different input ranges, it consumes a different amount of current to produce a balanced output.

Input 1-1.5V, output 5V 40-100mA 2. Input 1.5-2V, output 5V 100-150mA 3. Input 2-3V, output 5V 150-380mA 4. Input more than 3V, output 5V 380-480mA

TP4056 Battery Charger Module

This 3.7V Battery Charger TP4056 module is made for charging rechargeable lithium batteries using the constant-current/constant-voltage (CC/CV) charging method. In addition to safely charging a lithium battery, TP4056 BMS Board also provides the necessary protection required by lithium batteries. The TP4056 is suitable for USB power and adapter power supplies. Due to the internal PMOSFET architecture and anti-reverse charging path, no external isolation diodes are required.

To learn more about this module, you can go through its datasheet here: TP4056 Module Datasheet.

Power Supply Circuit for NodeMCU with Battery Charger Boost Converter

The Circuit Diagram for Power Supply Circuit for NodeMCU with Battery Charger Boost Converter is given below. The circuit can be powered using two methods, one with 9V/12V DC Adapter and other with 3.7V Lithium-Ion Battery.

For powering the Board using DC Jack, we have used DCJ0202 Female Jack. We used 470uF 100uF Electrolytic Capacitor to avoid DC fluctuations and remove voltage spikes. The LM7805 Voltage regulator IC can take the input voltage from 7V to 35V. But is recommended to use the input voltage up to 15V only. With an increase in voltage, there is more heat dissipation that requires a bigger heat sink. The output from the Voltage regulator is connected to the Vin pin of NodeMCU GND is connected to GND. Hence you can power up the module using 9V/12V DC Adapter or by 9V Battery.

On the other hand, if you don’t want to power up the NodeMCU using DC Adapter, you can use 3.7V Lithium-Ion or Lithium Polymer Battery. Using the Boost Converter Module 3.7V is boosted to 5V (can work from 2.8V input to 4.2V input). The 5V boosted voltage is connected to switch and the switch is connected to 5V Vin pin of NodeMCU. The Battery terminal is also connected to the output terminal of the TP4056 Battery Charger Module. Thus the battery can be charged using 5V MicroUSB Data Cable.

The board has an LED connected via 220ohm resistor which is used to indicate the Module is powered ON. While charging the battery, it is recommended to turn off the SPDT switch.

PCB Designing

The PCB for Power Supply for NodeMCU with Battery Charger Booster is given below. The PCB is designed using EasyEDA PCB Designing tool. The front view the backview of the PCB is given below.

The Gerber File for the PCB is given below. You can download the Gerber File go for PCB ordering.

We have also designed a better version of the ESP8266 Battery-powered board that can be used for IoT applications. The board is compact and can be powered with Battery and also has a charging circuit built on the PCB.

The Best Portable Chargers and Power Banks for 2023

Is your phone, tablet, or laptop typically in the battery red zone before the day’s end? These portable chargers and power banks give you the most boost when you’re out of juice.

I love portable technology—if you can put it in a or a bag, I’m probably into it. I’ve covered phones and tablets of all shapes and sizes, and reviewed everything from game consoles to laptops in my decade-plus career. Prior to joining PCMag, I wrote articles for Android Authority, How-To Geek, MUO, New Atlas, Tom’s Hardware, and plenty of other tech publications.

Apple MagSafe Battery Pack (Credit: Steven Winkelman)

Watching your phone or tablet steadily run out of power when you’re nowhere near an outlet is stressful. Fortunately, third-party portable batteries are available in many sizes and capacities. Some power banks offer fast charging, wireless charging, built-in cables, AC adapters, and LED flashlights—and even the ability to jump-start your car. Regardless of your budget, you can find a portable charger that keeps your device going when your battery icon starts to dip into the red.

But with so many options to choose from, how do you know which one is right for you? Read on for our tips, followed by the most important points to consider as you shop.

Recommended by Our Editors

Best Affordable PD Power Bank

Anker PowerCore Slim 10000 PD

Why We Picked It

Despite its reasonable price, the Anker PowerCore Slim PD 10000 offers high-end features like USB Power Delivery for fast charging, as well as both types of USB ports.

Who It’s For

This 10,000mAh charger doesn’t have the highest capacity, but it’s more than enough for people who need just a little extra power throughout the day and don’t have the patience for slow charging speeds.

Best Ultra-Portable Power Bank

Anker 321 Power Bank (PowerCore 5K)

Why We Picked It

A huge battery capacity is convenient, but sometimes you need a small device that you can carry around without a backpack. The 5,200mAh Anker 321 Power Bank fits that need perfectly, especially because it offers both a USB-A and USB-C port.

Who It’s For

This is ideal for people who care more about portability than capacity. It won’t charge your phone multiple times, but it can still get you through a long day.

Best for Charging Laptops

Anker 737 Power Bank

Why We Picked It

The Anker 737 features 140W output, which means it can charge bigger, more power-hungry devices like a laptop just as effortlessly as it can juice up a phone or tablet.

Who It’s For

If you often need to charge a laptop when you’re nowhere near an outlet, this 24,000mAh backup battery can lower your stress levels. It’s more expensive than other options on this list, so people who tend to charge smaller devices like phones or tablets are better off with the more affordable choices.

Apple MagSafe Battery Pack

Why We Picked It

True to its name, Apple’s MagSafe Battery Pack is notable for its MagSafe support. You can simply stick it to the back of your phone to charge it wirelessly.

Who It’s For

If you need to keep your iPhone running while away from home, you won’t find a more convenient solution. People with older iPhones (before the iPhone 12) need to look at other options, though, as MagSafe isn’t supported.

Best High-Capacity Power Bank

Mophie Powerstation XXL

Why We Picked It

The Mophie Powerstation XXL does it all—it has a considerable 20,000mAh capacity, 18W PD charging, and both USB-A and USB-C ports.

Who It’s For

If you’re looking to recharge a phone or tablet several times on the go (and quickly), this is a top choice. The only drawback is that it doesn’t support larger devices like laptops.

Most Durable PD Power Bank

Otterbox Fast Charger Power Bank

Why We Picked It

Many people know Otterbox for its durable phone cases, but the company is now bringing that expertise to the world of power banks. In addition to its strong build quality, the Otterbox Fast Charger Power Bank has all the key features you need, such as fast charging with PD, both types of USB ports, and several options for battery capacity.

Who It’s For

If you are worried about damaging your backup battery when you travel or commute, this is one of the safest bets. It also comes with a limited lifetime warranty.

Best Solar-Powered Portable Charger

QiSa Solar Charger

Why We Picked It

The QiSa Solar Charger can use the sun to recharge itself, supports both wired and wireless charging, and even has a built-in flashlight. Best of all, it offers a massive 38,800mAh capacity.

Who It’s For

If you spend a lot of time outdoors, this is among your best choices for keeping your devices running while off of the grid. In other words, it’s camping approved.

What Size Battery Do You Need?

On the.friendly front, most smaller batteries have a capacity of around 5,000mAh, which is typically enough to top up most phones once.

Meanwhile, a 10,000mAh battery can give today’s flagships two full charges. A 20,000mAh battery can charge a flagship four times, or two phones two times. Some power banks have enough juice to power laptops. Of course, a higher capacity often translates to a heavier, larger, and more expensive battery.

Most companies advertise how many times their products can recharge popular phones, but if you want to calculate that number for yourself, RAVPower has a useful guide (Opens in a new window) that can give you an estimate.

In the end, it’s best to assess your typical needs before buying. If your phone hits the red zone by mid-afternoon and you only need enough juice to get you to the end of the workday, a 5,000mAh battery should be plenty.

What’s the Difference Between Power Input and Output?

You’ll find three types of ports on today’s portable batteries:

Generally speaking, you charge the battery itself via micro USB or USB-C (input). Some batteries charge faster than others and USB-C charges much faster than micro USB.

Nearly all batteries include a standard USB-A port (output). This is for plugging in USB-A-to-micro-USB, USB-A-to-Lightning, or USB-A-to-USB-C cables for charging your iPhone or Android device.

Some batteries include built-in output cables and these generally have micro USB, USB-C, or Lightning connectors.

The most important thing to do is to match the battery’s output to your phone’s input. For example, if you have an iPhone, be sure the battery has its own Lightning connector or supports USB-A-to-Lightning or USB-C-to-Lightning cables.

Larger batteries with higher capacities might include a multitude of ports to support input and multiple outputs at the same time. You may see two USB-A and two USB-C ports, for example, though micro USB ports are becoming less common.

If you picked up an iPhone 13 or iPhone 14 and were surprised by the lack of an included wall charger, see our article on charging your iPhone.

What Is Fast Charging?

Another factor to consider is how quickly a power bank can charge your device. Battery output is measured in voltage and amperage. Amperage (or current) is the amount of electricity that flows from the battery to the connected device, while voltage is the amount of potential energy. Multiplying volts by amps gives you wattage, the measure of total power. To make devices charge faster, most manufacturers either vary the voltage or boost the amperage.

Today’s devices support a wide range of Rapid-charging technology, such as Qualcomm QuickCharge, USB Power Delivery, or proprietary fast-charge systems.

Quick Charge works by increasing voltage rather than amperage. This standard typically allows you to charge supported phones to 50 percent capacity in 30 minutes, which is especially helpful when you need power in a pinch.

battery, power, supply

Power Delivery is a newer protocol in which two compatible devices negotiate on the fastest charging option available based on the charger, cable, and circuitry. It also allows for power to flow both ways.

The most common devices (Apple iPhones and Samsung Galaxies) support charging rates of 27W and 45W, respectively. It’s best to look for batteries that can support charging in that range.

Is Pass-Through Charging Safe and Useful?

Pass-through charging is another feature to consider; with it, you can charge devices and the portable power bank simultaneously. That’s convenient if both your phone and backup battery are running on empty. You shouldn’t encounter any safety issues if the manufacturer of the portable battery you buy advertises pass-through charging as a feature, but the power output might change in this mode.

How Does Wireless Charging Work?

Wireless charging has become popular because it allows you to power up compatible devices without a cable. Qi is the dominant standard for compatible Android phones (up to 18W) while Apple iPhones rely on MagSafe charging (up to 15W). iPhones will charge wirelessly on Qi chargers, but only at 7.5W.

Some battery makers have built Qi or MagSafe-compatible wireless charging into the surfaces of their portable batteries. Such batteries mean you can leave the cables at home.

Should You Buy a Battery Case Instead of a Power Bank?

If you find that you often forget to carry your backup battery when you need it most, you should consider a dedicated battery case instead. These combine the portability and protection of a case with additional battery capacity to keep your phone topped off at all times.

There are several drawbacks. First, they have limited additional capacity on board. Second, they are limited in terms of the number of phones they support (mostly just iPhones, Galaxies, and Pixels). Third, you can’t charge much else with them.

The Best Wireless Chargers

Why fumble around for a charging cable when you can rest your phone on a wireless charging pad? Whether you’re an Android user or an iPhone fan, check out our roundups of the best wireless chargers and the best MagSafe chargers to help you cut the cord.

Steven Winkelman contributed to this story.

Leave a Comment