Happiness is a fully charged battery, especially for those seasoned travelers who experienced thoroughly how quickly their smartphone, tablet, and other gadgets run out of juice.
That’s why most people consider it essential to pack a portable external battery charger, which lets you extend your runtimes without having to seek out an AC outlet or put extra strain on your laptop by siphoning power from its USB ports. So what kind of portable external battery charger should you choose?
Shape? Size? Price?
It’s all about math. A rechargeable battery’s capacity is usually measured in milliamperes (mAh). For example, a Samsung Galaxy S5 comes with a 2,600mAh battery, while the iPhone 5S relies on a 1,440mAh cell.
It stands to reason, then, that any portable charger you buy should have at least as much capacity as your smartphone. That way you can fully recharge it from a fully drained state. But consider that you also pack a 4,400mAh Kindle Fire HD and a 1,500mAh Bluetooth speaker. If you’d want to be able to recharge all three devices, you’d need a charger with an 8,000mAh battery. Or you have an extra 6,500mAh iPad mini2, an external battery charger with over 10000mAh capacity is better.
Of course, it’s common knowledge that the larger the battery in an external battery charger, the more you’ll be able to juice your mobile devices. But larger batteries weigh more and cost more, so you’ll have to factor those considerations into your decision.
The external battery charger I always take is Kinkoo Infinite Nova, and I find it an almost ideal travel companion. Stocked with a 10,500mAh battery and two microUSB plugs, it is able to fully recharge my iPhone 5S and iPad mini2, with light weight to be take in my bag at all times. It fits my definition of “just right” for the road: not too large, not too small.
Of course, it’s just one option out of hundreds.