Review: Anker PowerCore Metro Essential 20000 Power Bank. Power bank anker 20000mah

Review: Anker PowerCore Metro Essential 20000 Power Bank

Most high capacity power banks these days tend to use some sort of fast charging tech like Power Delivery or Quick Charge. The more common fast charging tech that they use is Power Delivery as it’s useful for charging smartphones and laptops. It’s quite rare for a power bank to have a USB-C port for it to only be used as an input port to recharge the power bank.

However, that’s what this Anker PowerCore Metro Essential 20000 power bank features. The USB-C port can only be used as an input port. So let’s see if that’s a good or bad thing.

Power Capacity:

Going by the name, you probably know how much power capacity this power bank has and that would be 20,000mAh. A good amount of power for charging smartphones we would say that a 20,000mAh power bank may be more fitting for charging a smartphone now than a 10,000mAh power bank. This is because most smartphones have larger batteries. A few years back, smartphones with 3,000mAh batteries use to be considered as having large batteries.

Now we’re to the point where smartphones are going even higher. The new Samsung Galaxy S20 has a 4,000mAh battery, the higher-end S20 has a 4,500mAh battery and the highest end S20 Ultra has a 5,000mAh battery.

Even the iPhone, the phone that almost always had a small battery due to its great battery management now has a large battery, with the iPhone 11 Pro Max using a 3,969mAh battery.

With all that said, this PowerCore Metro Essential can charge most phones to full power about three to four times. Charging tablets that would have a 5,000mAh to 7,000mAh battery can fair about two full charges from this Anker power bank.

You won’t be able o charge tablets with this power bank as it does not feature USB-C Power Delivery charging.

Output Charging:

Okay, so when you see a USB-C port on a power bank you likely think that it’s an output that you can use to charge your smartphone or laptop. That’s not the case with this Anker power bank.

The only output ports that you can use to charge your devices are the two USB-A ports. Neither of the USB-A ports uses Quick Charge. The ports have a 5V/2.4A (12W) charging speed, and if you’re using the two ports at the same time, the max output is 3 Amps (15W).

So if you have an Android smartphone that is Power Delivery or Quick Charge compatible, just know that this power bank will not be able to fast charge it. The same is true for iPhones that are Power Delivery compatible. It only features standard charging.

Input Charging:

The recharging part of this PowerCore Metro Essential power bank is somewhat more interesting than the output charging. That’s because two input ports can be used to recharge the power bank, but they can only be used one at a time.

One is the USB-C input port and the other is a Micro-USB input port. Either of the input ports recharges the power bank at the same 12W recharge speed. It would have been helpful to have a USB-C input port charge the power bank faster as it’s a USB-C port and in general it’s more powerful than the Micro-USB input port.

Size and Weight:

The size of 20,000mAh power banks a few years ago use to be quite large, but that has changed drastically and we’re to the point where 20,000mAh power banks are about the size as 10,000mAh power banks. This power bank has a length of 6.2 inches, a width of 2.9 inches and a thickness of 0.8 inches The power bank is about 8 ounces.

So even with its 20,000mAh power bank, you’re still able to place this charger into your

Functional Components:

If you’ve ever used an Anker power bank before, then you know what you expect here.

The charger automatically starts charging when you connect a device to it. There is a power button at the top and it has four white power indicators to show the remaining power capacity.

Structure and Material:

The build of the charger is solid, except for the top where Anker placed a fabric covering. There is still plastic underneath it, obviously, but it’s pretty cool to have and it adds some grip to the power bank.

Tech:

There is no heating up to speak of from this power bank and this can be attributed to the fact that it doesn’t use any fast charging tech.

Reliability

A 20,000mAh power bank with two USB ports is going to be reliable for basically anyone to use to charge their smartphone.

However, what this Anker power bank is not reliable for is for fast charging your smartphone because it does not feature Power Delivery or Quick Charge

Summary:

It has enough power capacity to charge your smartphone to full power a few times, but it does not feature fast charging tech, and he USB-C port can only be used as an input port to recharge the power bank.

It’s a small power bank for one that features a 20,000mAh power capacity.

The Anker Metro Essential power bank does look different than other power banks from Anker, but with its fabric top, it gives a good grip. The charger doesn’t overheat either, likely because of its lack of fast charging.

The charger will be able to charge your smartphone to full power a few times, but it won’t fast charge it with its high capacity.

Specs for Anker PowerCore Metro Essential 20000 Power Bank:

Conclusion:

Anker’s PowerCore Metro Essential power bank is a great standard power bank that offers a great standard portable charging experience. Just know that you won’t be getting any fast charging, but you’ll still be getting the exceptional quality that Anker has to offer.

Anker PowerCore Essential 20000 PD Review

Summary The Anker PowerCore Essential 20000 PD offers the large capacity of a laptop power bank. But by limiting its output Anker is able to pass on cost savings. Ideal for anyone needing to charge handheld devices for long periods of time.

User Review

  • Fast charges iPhone, Samsung Galaxy, Google Pixel, LG, and Motorola phones
  • Charges Switch while you play
  • Can be recharged by Nintendo Switch AC Adapter
  • Fits in most Switch carrying cases, but takes up most of the accessory
  • 15V power output better supports some devices
  • Trickle charge mode
  • Includes a USB-C to USB-C cable
  • Within FAA limits for lithium batteries and flights

Disclosure: As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. I purchased the product in this review.

Tech Specs:

Anker PowerCore Essential 20000 PD specs

  • Ports: USB-C, USB-A
  • USB-C Output:
  • 18W USB-C Power Delivery 3.0 (5V/3A, 9V/2A, 15V/1.25A)
  • 18W PowerIQ 2.0 (Anker’s tech, but compatible with the standards below)
  • Quick Charge 3.0
  • Samsung Adaptive Fast Charging
  • Huawei FCP
  • Apple 2.4A

Included In Box:

review, anker, powercore, metro, essential

Anker PowerCore Essential 20000 PD box and contents

  • Anker PowerCore Essential 20000 PD
  • USB-C to USB-C 2.0 cable, 3 feet
  • Travel pouch

Good For:

  • Commute
  • Travel
  • iPhone
  • Android
  • Nintendo Switch (handheld)
  • iPad Pro (pre-2018)

Estimated Number of Charges:

  • iPhone 6/7/8/SE: 7 charges
  • iPhone Plus/X/XR: 4 charges
  • iPhone 11, Samsung Galaxy S8/S9: 4 charges
  • Samsung Galaxy S10: 4 charges
  • Nintendo Switch (2017): 9 hours of play
  • Nintendo Switch (2019): 12 hours of play
  • Nintendo Switch Lite: 9.5 hours of play

First Impression

The Anker PowerCore Essential 20000 PD fills a niche of higher capacity for smaller devices. While a 30W/20,000mAh could do the same job limiting the output to 18W saves on production cost. Allowing Anker to offer this model for 20 less MSRP than its previous USB PD supporting 20,000mAh model.

The Essential has a large, round button on top. Used for checking capacity and activating trickle charge mode. Unlike some older models, there are only 4 LEDs on the button, not 8-10. Don’t expect the circle to fill when recharging, the LEDs cover less than half of the curve. The top also has a grip-friendly surface. But the bottom doesn’t, lessening the gripping surface’s effectiveness.

Compared To Similar Power Banks

are from Amazon Product Advertising API, last updated on 2023-06-25.

Device Testing

Check with your device’s manufacturer to verify which charging standards it supports.

USB Power Delivery Quick Charge 4 Phones

  • Apple iPhone 8/X/XR/XS/11/SE
  • Essential Phone
  • Google Pixel
  • LG ThinQ/V30
  • Razer
  • Samsung Galaxy S8/S9/S10/S20
  • Samsung Galaxy Note 8/9/10
  • Xiaomi Mi 8/9
  • ZTE Axon Pro 9/10

Using an iPhone 8 for testing we find USB PD phones will fast charge over the USB-C port. iPhones will need to use a USB-C to Lightning cable, not included. And Android phones will need a USB-C to USB-C cable, which is included.

For older and newer iPhones the USB-A port supports Apple 2.4A. An older, but still functional fast-charging standard. Older iPhones (4-7) can fast charge using USB-A. Newer iPhones will charge ~15 minutes faster using USB-C.

Quick Charge 3.0 Phones

  • HTC
  • LG
  • Motorola
  • Nokia
  • Samsung Galaxy
  • Sony
  • Xiaomi Mi 5/6
  • ZTE

Using a Moto G6 for testing we see Quick Charge will fast charge over the USB-A port. Anker uses their own PowerIQ 2.0 technology, which mimics Quick Charge. As such it is considered QC compatible and works with Samsung AFC technology.

The USB-C port is strictly USB PD, so no fast charging there for Quick Charge phones.

Nintendo Switch

Works well for all model Nintendo Switch in handheld/tabletop mode.

  • Nintendo Switch (original) – Charges near its max rate while playing and sleeping.
  • Nintendo Switch (2019 update) – Charges near its max rate while playing and sleeping.
  • Nintendo Switch Lite – Charges near its max rate while playing and sleeping.

It will not support the Switch’s dock, as it doesn’t offer the required output.

If you have an original model Switch (pre-August 2019) Anker’s product outperforms the rest. Their support of a 15V power profile instead of 12V allows for faster charging of the original Switch. Due to an underdraw issue of that model Switch.

Trickle Charge Mode

Anker PowerCore Essential 20000 PD in trickle charge mode

Trickle charge mode is for low power devices. Such as a Fitbit or wireless earbuds. These small accessories draw little current (60mA). So much so a power bank thinks charging is complete, and shutdowns to save power. This means a low power draw device could get only minutes of charging.

Trickle charge mode corrects for this, by forcing the power bank to stay on for a couple of hours. Allowing small accessories time to charge.

For Anker’s power bank you double press the button to activate the mode. A green LED will turn on in place of one of the blue LEDs. After two hours the power bank will switch back to regular mode. Shutting down completely shortly afterward. Or you can double press the button again to exit from trickle charge mode. There’s no harm in allowing the power bank to stay in trickle charge mode for the full duration.

No Fast Charging With Two Devices

If you connect two devices to the power bank it will disable all fast charging tech.

review, anker, powercore, metro, essential

Both ports only support 5V. Which removes fast charging options outside of Apple 2.4A standard. There is a 15W total output limit shared between the two USB ports.

When you connect a second device you’ll notice the charging resets on the first. This is the power bank stepping down to a lower output level. If you disconnect the second device you’ll want to unplug and replug the first. To make sure fast charging turns back on.

This limitation is typical of many power banks. A few can allow for one fast charging and one regular charging. Fewer still allow for dual fast charging, and those are always large and heavy. There is a limit to how much current can cross its circuits without extra hardware. Which adds size, weight, and cost.

Whether you should fast charge one device or regular charge two depends on battery levels and your immediate needs. The closer both devices are to 100%, the less impactful not fast charging becomes.

Summary

The Anker PowerCore Essential 20000 PD is a good value option for some, depending on your devices and needs. It works bests with smaller devices, from Bluetooth earbuds up to Nintendo Switch and small tablets. Its higher capacity offers up to twice the run time as a 10,000mAh model. Good if you’re charging several devices on a day trip. Or charging one device over several days.

Anker PowerCore Essential 20000 PD ports

For phones, it fast charges all iPhones and most Androids. Notably Samsung, Google, LG, and Motorola models.

For the Nintendo Switch, it charges in handheld mode as fast as any other option. The original Switch charges faster with the Essential than its peers from AUKEY or RAVPower. But the power bank cannot power a docked Switch.

By limiting the output to 18W Anker saves on production costs, and passes that on to you. The Anker PowerCore Speed 20000 PD has the same capacity, but 30W output (and no PowerIQ 2.0). It costs 20 more MSRP as of this posting. If you need to charge a small laptop that extra 20 gets you that performance. But if you only have handheld devices the Essential gives you the same performance at a lower cost.

If you don’t need the extra capacity you’ll find a better value with an 18W/10,000mAh power bank. Such as the Anker PowerCore 10000 PD Redux. It offers the same output features. But in a small and cheaper package.

About Anker

Anker has U.S. based support (web, email, phone) and an 18-month warranty. And their own online community with forums. They are a beloved brand within many USB-C communities.

Bottom Line

The Anker PowerCore Essential 20000 PD is perfect for charging small, handheld devices for long periods of time. It’ll fast charge iPhones, most Androids, iPad, and Nintendo Switch. At a cost less than a similar power bank made for small laptops.

Buy if you:

  • Need to fast charge iPhone, popular Androids, iPad Pro, or Nintendo Switch for long trips or over a weekend
  • Want to charge an original model Switch as fast as possible
  • Prefer the Anker brand and customer support

Don’t buy if you:

  • Need to also charge a laptop on the go
  • Only need to support a single device for a few hours

You’ll want a USB-C wall charger to quickly recharge this USB-C power bank. I recommend the Anker PowerPort III Nano. A small charger for your large power bank.

Be sure to check the Deals page to see if this or a similar charger is on sale.

Enjoyed this review? Sign up for the Switch Chargers newsletter and get updates on future reviews and Nintendo Switch related deals.

The Best Battery Packs to Keep Your Gadgets Going

When your smartphone can’t make it through the day, have a backup plan.

By Don Melanson Published: Apr 6, 2021

Chances are you’ve been stuck more than once searching for an outlet to top off a dying smartphone battery. If you’re looking to avoid that stress in the future, a portable battery pack is a great way to give yourself some added peace of mind and ensure that your mobile devices are always charged when you need them. Even if you’re not using it every day, it’s a great thing to keep on-hand (and juiced) in the event of an emergency, power outage, or if you just need something to run your lantern off of at the campsite.

Deciding to get one is simple. Choosing which one to get, however, isn’t. Some might only be able to partially recharge your smartphone or tablet (or juice it more slowly than your wall charger), while others are able to quickly recharge multiple devices but might be more than you need. Read on for buying advice and things to consider, plus reviews of stand-out models that are worth your hard-earned cash.

Size vs. Capacity

When deciding on a portable battery pack, keep in mind when and where you’re going to use it, and what you’ll be using it for. If you often find yourself looking to top off your smartphone battery during your daily routine, you’ll likely want a more portable but smaller capacity battery pack that’s easier to carry with you. If, on the other hand, you’re traveling a lot or regularly find yourself far from a power outlet for extended periods of time, you might be more inclined to trade some portability for added capacity that can let you recharge a number of devices (even a laptop) a couple of times over.

Like your smartphone or laptop’s battery, a portable battery pack’s capacity is measured in milliamp hours (or mAh). And that capacity can range from 1,000 or 1,500 in the smallest, most portable battery packs (enough to only partially recharge an average smartphone) to tens of thousands in higher capacity units—the biggest of which can weigh as much as the laptops they’re designed to power.

Connectivity

Another important consideration when it comes to portable battery packs is connectivity. While almost all of them will have at least one standard USB port to charge a range of devices, many also have Lightning connectors for Apple devices, as well as USB-C ports for newer smartphones, laptops, and other gadgets like the Nintendo Switch. Some larger battery packs can even have a regular AC outlet built into them.

You’ll also want to pay attention to the battery pack’s power output, which can indicate how fast it’s able to recharge devices. As you’d expect, the higher the output, the faster it provides juice—given your phone or other device supports that level of charging. Chargers with a low power output (under ten watts) will charge your phone more slowly that your regular power adapter, while a higher output (up to 45 watts) will be able to easily charge most USB-C laptops relatively quickly.

How We Chose

To select these portable battery packs, we relied on our own previous research on the subject and experience using similar devices. Then we consulted reviews from a range of trusted publications, including PC World, Wirecutter, and Android Central. We also took into account customer ratings from online retailers like Amazon and Best Buy, using them to calculate our Consumer Score. This represents the percentage of reviewers on those sites that rated the battery packs at least four out of five stars.

Which MagSafe battery pack is best? 6 Expert Picks

ZDNET tested the best MagSage battery packs on the market to see which can best power your iPhone. Compare leading models from Apple, Anker, and more.

Jason Cipriani is based out of beautiful Colorado and has been covering technology news and reviewing the latest gadgets as a freelance journalist for the past 13 years. His work can be found all across the Internet and in print.

Lena Muhtadi Borrelli has several years of experience in writing for insurance domains such as Bankrate, allconnect, Healthline, Reviews.com, HomeInsurance.com, My Slumber Yard and MYMOVE. She is a financial expert who previously worked for Morgan St.

Sean Jackson is a creative copywriter living in Florida. He’s had work published with CNET, Realtor.com, theScore, ESPN, and the San Francisco Chronicle.

Lena Muhtadi Borrelli has several years of experience in writing for insurance domains such as Bankrate, allconnect, Healthline, Reviews.com, HomeInsurance.com, My Slumber Yard and MYMOVE. She is a financial expert who previously worked for Morgan St.

Sean Jackson is a creative copywriter living in Florida. He’s had work published with CNET, Realtor.com, theScore, ESPN, and the San Francisco Chronicle.

No matter how much Apple touts the longevity of the latest iPhone’s battery, users know it never seems to last all day.

Wireless battery packs that employ Apple’s MagSage technology offer an even more compact solution to the ever-helpful portable power banks, so you can ditch the wires entirely to power your iPhone 12-14 generation model on the go.- including the mini and Pro Max.

ZDNET went hands-on with the best and latest MagSafe battery packs on the market, testing them for efficient charge rate, portability, and charging pass-through capabilities to help you confidently decide which is the most practical and powerful option for your phone. Our first pick, the myCharge MagLock Magnetic Powerbank is budget friendly, has a built-in speaker that signals charge level and connection, and has a unique design that keeps the pack from overheating. Read on to see how other models compare and which is right for you.

myCharge MagLock Magnetic Powerbank

Best MagSafe battery pack overall

  • Comprehensive functionality
  • USB-C port
  • Built-in speaker signals charge level and connection
  • Budget-friendly

Features: Capacity: 3,000mAh, 6,000mAh, 9,000mAh | Charging Port: USB-C | Power button: Yes

The latest company to offer a MagSafe compatible battery pack is myCharge with its MagLock lineup. The MagLock lineup has three different options, ranging in capacity and price. A 3,000mAh option is 50, 6,000mAh is 60 and the 9,000mAh pack is 70.

The MagLock has a unique raised design where the pack connects to the phone. According to myCharge, the gap between the phone and the battery pack allows both devices to remain cooler than the competition, which leads to better efficiency and faster charging rates. When you connect the pack to your phone, it plays a short sound to let you know the pack is in use. Another sound plays when you remove the pack from your iPhone.

There’s also a power button, but I haven’t had to use it. I just attach the pack to my phone, let it charge, and then remove it. The MagLock is charged via a USB-C connection, and functions as a wireless charging pad if you place your phone on the pack while it’s plugged in.

Apple MagSafe battery pack

Best MagSafe battery pack for native integration

  • Deep integration with iOS takes full advantage of the battery pack
  • Smart charging ensures proper iPhone and battery pack charging
  • Your iPhone uses reverse wireless charging to charge the pack
  • Compact size

Features: Capacity: 1,460mAh/ 11.13Wh | Charging Port: Lightning | Power button: No

Apple’s MagSafe battery pack is the second smallest battery pack I tested, even though pictures can make it look big. Inside are two battery cells with 11.13 Wh of capacity. Don’t expect the battery pack to charge your iPhone from 0 to 100. Wireless charging is highly inefficient due to several factors (heat being one of them). You’re more likely to get around a 60% charge on the iPhone 12 Pro, and for most, that’s more than good enough to get through a long day at work or when traveling.

At 100, the MagSafe battery pack is the most expensive pack of the lot. Its tight integration can arguably justify Apple tax with iOS 14.7 and above; when you place the pack on a compatible iPhone, you’ll see an animation on your screen letting you know how much of a charge the pack has. It will automatically begin charging your phone. The first time you attach one to your phone, you’ll also see an alert letting you know it will keep your phone at 90% to protect your battery. The battery widget built into iOS will show the pack’s current charge level, right alongside your iPhone and other accessories.

Charging the battery pack is done via a Lightning connector on the bottom of the pack. If you use a 20W adapter, you can charge both the pack and the iPhone at the same time by plugging the connector into your iPhone. Your iPhone will then use reverse wireless charging to top off the battery pack.- the first time we’ve seen such a feature in use from any iPhone model.

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