How to buy a Power Bank?

Updated on : Nov 29, 2019 11:22 AM
How to buy a Power Bank?

OVERVIEW

In the recent times, smartphones have become an indispensable part of our lives. It is the need of the hour to stay online 24/7! Your fingers may never tire but your phone battery sure does. Hence, now-a-days having a power bank is as important as having a phone, especially if you are constantly on the go.

We all know what a power bank is but is also important to what are the types and kinds of batteries used in a power bank.

There are two main types of batteries: Lithium Ion and Lithium Polymer

Lithium ion battery is 65mm in length and 18mm in diameter, cylindrical in shape and despite being an ol’ school object is still very popular owing to its low price. On the other hand, Lithium Polymer is a new-age advanced form of a battery, made up of the aluminium plastic casing. T is on a little expensive side compared to Li-ion battery, but they are light in weight and have better safety performances and features.

Here are some features that you should look for in a power bank before buying it

CAPACITY vs PORTABILITY

The main aspect to look for in a portable power bank is the capacity, which is measured in milliampere-hour (mAh). The capacity of mobile phones is also measured in mAh, so if your mobile has a 1500mAh battery, then you should opt for a power bank with 1500mAh that can charge your mobile once. But this is not always possible because of power lost due to circuit resistance and voltage conversion, and sometimes due to the quality of charging cable. A power bank with a larger capacity also has its drawbacks, it is quite heavy and also slight more expensive.

MOBILE DEVICE: INPUT CURRENT

Many smartphone-oriented power banks have an output of 1A over USB port. This may work for some people, but some may notice that it takes longer for the phone to charge. This is the usual case in smartphones that are able to accept higher current, as many of them have 1.5A charging interface and hose with Qualcomm’s Quick Charge 2.0 can pull as much as 2A. To know how much your phones draws check on the charger or manual for details on current draw. This will help you to decide your current drawn expectations. Also, there is no harm in using the high-powered port on a smartphone as it will only draw current of which it is capable of. Instead, it might get charged faster, if it is able to pull more current.

BATTERY PACK: INPUT CURRENT

A power bank with high capacity charges takes longer to charge the device. These chargers need to be kept on charging overnight. Another factor that affects the charging of power bank is its input current. Most of the power banks have 0.8A and 1.5A, with higher currents typically found in high-priced products. This can be a tiebreaker factor if you ever come across identical battery packs. Some portable power banks can charge devices even when they are on charging. However, this is highly not recommended as it can affect battery’s lifespan due to the constant passing current through it.

USB CHARGING

Power banks, nowadays, come with in-built USB cable that wraps around the case so that you won’t forget it somewhere or lose the cable. For iOS users, these packs come with a built-in Lightning cable. These cables cost more than their USB counterparts because of MFi (Made for iPhone/iPod/iPad) certification and licensing fees the manufacturers have to pay. High powered battery packs come with more than one USB port for charging. The biggest advantage of multiple ports is that you can charge more than one device simultaneously. Naturally, the number of ports means the more it will cost. So the number of ports you should go for depends on upon the number of devices you carry. The important factor in this scenario is to find out the total output current of the power bank when more than one port is used.

QUALITY vs PRICE

Batteries can be erratic; hence you must always buy a power bank from a trusted source. For better safety and performance, buy a power bank with over charge protection (OCP), over voltage protection (OVP) and over temperature protection (OTP) that makes sure its durability against spurts in current, charging and discharging.

Lastly, when something sounds too good to be true, it mostly is! So never get ripped off while buying a power support for your smartphone. Always remember these basic pointers before you buy one.

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