With mobile devices more necessary in our daily lives it’s becoming extremely important to make sure that they’re charged up and ready to go at a moments notice. That can obviously be an issue for some, especially if you find yourself out and about for long periods of time without any sort of outlets nearby. Thankfully, devices like the GoPower Pack by Kanex exist to solve that exact problem! The GoPower Pack is a mobile battery pack, which means that you charge it in advance and take it with you on your (no doubt exciting) excursions, then plug your devices into it when necessary.
CONTENTS (and Additional Mini-Review!)
For this review I received both the Kanex GoPower Pack (which is the main item being looked at) as well as two lightning connectors, also by Kanex. In the GoPower Pack’s box we had a charge cable, which is simply plugged into any USB port to start the charging process, the battery pack itself, and a small pouch for carrying your battery pack, as well as any other cables you might want to take on your travels.
The other box had, as previously mentioned, two charge and sync lightning cables. They were the perfect length for use with the GoPower Pack, and having two of them meant I could fill up both USB slots and not have to use one of my own lightning cables. In fact, I found them to be the optimal length for either having my phone in a side pocket while the charge pack fit snug in my back pocket, or the charge pack in the side pocket and my phone in hand, for either GPS travel or music management.
APPEARANCE AND DESIGN
The GoPower Pack is an almost no frills, right to the point, device charger. It doesn’t have any additional features (not that there’s a plethora of things you can put on a battery pack to begin with), but does have a little pop out stand for your device to rest on, so you could have a place to both set your device on while it charges and prop it up at the right angle to watch videos!
With the stand retracted and flush with the bottom of the battery pack, it’s a smooth and sturdy little thing, definitely capable of withstanding some tumbles and jostles during whatever adventure you go on. Thankfully, the stand also manages to stay in its grooves unless the perfect amount of force is applied, making me feel safe that it won’t slide out and possible snag on something while in a backpack or suitcase.
The design of the GoPower Pack is simplistic, Kanex having clearly taken an uncluttered approach to the pack. On the front end of the battery you have two USB ports, the one on the right (when facing the GoPower Pack) is a 2.1 A charger catering to iPads in particular while the one besides that is a 1.0 A charger. Thankfully, both slots work for most devices, each one just geared towards a specific type of apple product. To the left of the 1.0 A port is the GoPower Pack’s battery meter, the current level of charge left on the product indicated with a flashing square. Unfortunately, this can’t be turned on unless you have a device plugged in, at which point it can’t be turned off and will continue flashing until you unplug your device. Finally, on the surface to the right of the 2.1 A port, what you could probably consider the right side of the battery pack, you have the input slot to charge the GoPower itself.
PERFORMANCE AND FIELD TEST
Of course, the most important feature of a battery pack (for most people at least) is not how it looks or design choices Kanex made, it’s how well do they perform? In other words, how much more battery life can it give your devices? The back of the GoPower Pack’s box states that you can get four full charges on an iPhone 5c/5s and that the device’s capacity is 11,000 mAh. So, to truly test this I took it with me on a weekend trip and used it exclusively to charge my iPhone 5c. During my experiment I never actually let the battery drain entirely, but I did plug it in the instant I got the 20% battery notification since I felt like that’s when most people would feel compelled to give it more juice. Following this method, I ended up squeezing almost five full charges from the GoPower Pack, the last one stopping around 80%. In fact, I was able to go the entire weekend relying entirely on the GoPower.
So to test this even more, I charged the GoPower Pack the instant I got back and after letting my phone charge normally, proceeded to do the same thing, except through the course of a week. The GoPower once again managed to give me almost five full charges (from 20%), the last one ending around 75% this time. I would like to assume that you’d get less charges on an iPad, but I unfortunately have no way of testing that.
I also found it neat and rather handy that the four lights in the battery symbol almost seem to represent how many charges (out of the four Kanex says the GoPower Pack has) remain before you’re out of juice. I’m not even sure if this is really the case, or just happened by chance, but I am positive that as you use the GoPower more and its overall battery capacity drains the four lights will become less representative of how many charges are left inside the GoPower Pack.
REPORT ANALYSIS AND FINAL THOUGHTS
The Kanex GoPower Pack is a sleek, sturdy, well designed product perfect for taking on long road trips where you need that extra boost of energy, around four full charges actually. Unfortunately while sleekness is normally an advantage, I feel like having a button to toggle the battery indicator on and off (or at least for me to compulsively press whenever I have it in hand) should supersede a sleek design. However, the GoPower Pack does at least have a nice stand for you to prop your device on while it charges! The two usb slots with different amp outputs (aka. For iPads or other devices) is also a nice touch. So how does this all weigh to the GoPower Pack’s price tag of 69.99 USD? Well, the build quality definitely feels strong and made to last, and the charge capacity is high, but there are also various other battery packs available for cheaper, with either similar or more features to this one. So my recommendation is to know what you want, know your price tag, and choose accordingly. This is a slightly more expensive product than what most other 11,000 mAh chargers are at (around 40 USD), so make sure to keep that in mind when making your decision. Also worth mentioning is that I wasn’t able to test this with anything but an iPhone 5c as far as charging goes. The stand does seem able to hold a variety of phones, having enough space to support my iPhone 5c and my old HTC Android (while I can’t recall the exact model, it will be in one of the pictures!)