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Mar 1, 2017
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Whatever gadget you buy for whatever purpose, you can be sure of one thing: its actual battery life will be far from what’s advertised. Smartphones, tablets, and other mobile devices will always run out of power sooner than expected—and we all know that feeling of panic that takes over during the hunt for a vacant electrical outlet. Or worse, not having a device to shut the world out with because yours is now a useless brick.

Until manufacturers start making devices that have both an immense feature set and amazing battery life, we’ll have to rely on power banks to extend our mobile addiction. And they’ve stepped up, big time: their power capacities keep going up every year, and come with their own quirks to capture customers’ attention. We suggest taking a look at these seven life savers, and then getting your own power bank ASAP.


Ultra powerful

We got ourselves an ASUS ZenPower from Lazada a couple of years ago, back when 10050mAh seemed to be the capacity limit for power banks. We’re still quite happy with it today, so imagine our surprise when we found out ASUS has made two more ZenPower chargers since then—with the much larger ZenPower Ultra pushing the capacity to 20100mAh. That means you can use it to charge your phones up to an estimated five and a half times (for a Zenfone 2 Laser, anyway) before it needs its own top-up! It also has two USB ports with QuickCharge 2.0 so you can charge two devices at the same time, an LED light (handy for summer- and bagyo-season blackouts); and ASUS tech that protects it from short circuits, overcharging, and overheating.

This kind of power and protection doesn’t come cheap, though. We found a Lazada listing for this ZenPower variant in black, with a P2,495 price tag. G pa rin?


This Mi is Mine

We remember the original Mi Power Bank becoming an instant must-have around the same time as the first ASUS ZenPower, so it’s only fitting that we follow up with the latest version of Xiaomi’s portable charger. The 20000mAh capacity of the new Mi Power Bank makes for several worry-free charging cycles (up to seven times for an iPhone 6, by their estimate), and also has two USB ports with support for rapid charging. Its nice scratch-resistant plastic exterior with anti-slip pattern also ensures protection from clumsy and careless users.

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Here’s the bad news: right now it’s sold out over at the global Xiaomi website. But once it’s available again, you can get it for US$49.99 (around P2,500 without shipping fees).


Brave and beautiful

Capacity-wise, the Braven BRV-BANK’s 6000mAh seems paltry compared to the other power banks on this list. But this portable charger has something they don’t: the ability to shrug off water and (reasonable) drops, thanks to its rubber exterior and IPX5 certification. It also has Bluetooth capability; if you download Braven’s BRV-BANK app, you can monitor this power bank’s remaining power through your smartphone. And like the ASUS ZenPower Ultra, the BRV-BANK comes with a USB flashlight for when you’re in dark environments.

You can buy this charger for US$99.99 (around P5,000 without shipping fees) at Braven’s US website, or check with Braven’s authorized Philippine distributors for availability and price.

Use this force

Oh, your portable charger has that much capacity. How nice. But does it have wireless charging capability? No? Mophie’s charge force powerstation does. How about that? Its power capacity’s slightly “lower” at 10000mAh, but if your smartphone can do wireless charging (or if you’re already using a Mophie juice pack), you won’t need to worry about cables ever again. Well, OK, even non-wireless-charging phones can use this too, thanks to its one USB port.

Get it from the Mophie website at US$99.95 (around P5,000 without shipping fees), or inquire with Mophie’s official Philippine distributors Digital Walker and Beyond the Box for the charge force powerstation’s price and local availability.


Serious mojo

The black-and-orange iBattz’s Mojo BattStation Optimus means business; you really shouldn’t take marketing statements like “eight full smartphone charges” and a line about using the same cell powering electric cars lightly at all. The massive 26800mAh capacity would give you (and your entire barkada) several days’ worth of emergency gadget power. And if they don’t want to wait for their turn, they can use the other available USB port to power up.

It’s now available at the iBattz website for US$139.95 (around P7,000 without shipping fees), but you can also ask local distro Beyond the Box for availability and how much wallet damage to expect.


The King

If capacity is the only criterion for power bank contests, Aukey’s PB-Y3 Portable Charger would be the clear winner. 30000mAh, folks. Aukey claims this power bank can do up to 10 full charges for the iPhone7, or two and a half full charges for an iPad Pro. It’s also friends with QuickCharge 3.0 tech, so there’s less waiting time for your gadgets to return to action. And with all that power coursing from pack to phone (and other portables), Aukey’s EntireProtect tech ensures that nothing goes awry.

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Buy your own Aukey PB-Y3 charger from Amazon for US$59.99 (around P3,000 without shipping fees). You could also get one from Aukey Philippines Official on Facebook for three grand.


Small core

Sometimes, we’d prefer to trade in capacity for good form. The Anker PowerCore 10000 dips the power level to, yes, 10000mAh, but it’s good for up to four full smartphone charges, and we’ll always be good with that. It also has only one USB port, but speeds up your waiting time with PowerIQ and VoltageBoost technologies, and is as small as your credit card. Perfect for those who don’t need to top up an entire gadget army!

It’s also really affordable (well, compared to the other items on this list) at only P1,690. Get it directly from Anker Philippines or through any of their authorized resellers.

 

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