When you’re on the go, the last thing you want to discover is that your phone doesn’t have as much energy to make it through the day as you do. But, just as you can grab a cup of coffee to give yourself an energy boost, your phone can get the top up it needs from a portable charger.
Even the best smartphones can benefit from having a portable power bank handy. Very few modern phones sacrifice their svelte design in favor of packing in a larger battery, and that makes it harder for them to offer battery life that can hold up over long hours of having the screen on or playing mobile games. A good power bank will make up for the lack of internal power, sometimes even giving you multiple, full charges of your phone’s battery. A good many power banks even support fast charging or may have enough juice to keep up with more demanding devices, like tablets, the Nintendo Switch, or even some ultrabooks.
So, if you’re ready to leave battery concerns behind, check out our top picks for power banks and find one that’ll give you the extra charge you need when you’ve got a long day ahead of you and no power outlets in sight – and click here to find them in the UK. If you’re looking for some extra on-the-go gaming accessories you can score a good deal with these certified refurbished video game accessories from eBay.
TL;DR – These are the Best Portable Chargers:
1. Anker PowerCore Essential 20000
Best Portable Charger
The Anker PowerCore Essential 20000 will meet most people’s needs from an external power bank and then some. It packs a beefy, 20,000mAh battery inside that can easily recharge most phones a couple times over. It can even recharge many tablets.
It’s not just the number of times it can recharge devices but also how fast it can recharge them that matters. The Anker PowerCore Essential 20000 supports 20W PD fast charging out of its USB-C port, and it also can hit 18W charging speeds out of its USB-A port with PowerIQ 2.0. And, yes, you can charge two devices at the same time.
2. Amazon Basics Power Bank
Best Budget Portable Charger
Amazon will give you plenty of power on the go for just $25. The Amazon Basics Power Bank provides 10,000mAh of extra juice for your smartphones or tablets, and it has both USB-C and USB-A ports to deliver that power.
You’ll get up to 18W charging speeds with a USB-C PD connection, so you can enjoy a quick recharge. And, thanks to the size of the battery bank, you should have an easy time finding room for it in your backpack or purse. If you’re worried about the bank itself running low on charge, you can quickly check how much power is left by pressing the side button to get a measurement.
3. Xiaomi 10000mAh Redmi Power Bank
Best Ultra Cheap Portable Charger
Xioami’s 10,000mAh Redmi Power Bank isn’t the highest-powered option, but if you just need some extra battery life available for charging on the go, it can supply it at a low price. This battery bank offers up 10,000mAh and supports a total output of 2.6A at 5.1V for about 13W of power. That’s delivered by the power bank’s two USB-A ports.
The power bank gives you a couple of options for how to recharge it. There are both a USB-C port for power input as well as a micro USB port in case you’ve got the legacy cable on hand. And, all of this comes packed into a unit that weighs just 254 grams.
4. Mophie PowerStation PD
Best Portable Charger with Quickcharge
The Mophie PowerStation PD is one of the more affordable power banks with PD-certified quick charging. This battery ekes out 18W of fast charging power so you can top off your devices 2.5 times faster than with most portable batteries.
This battery also features 6,700mAh of capacity, which allows you to extend the life of your smartphone to a total of 23 hours. If you’re looking for even more battery life, there’s also the Mophie PowerStation PD XL (see it at Amazon), which bumps up capacity to 10,500mAh and a 35-hour extension on your phone’s battery life.
5. Anker PowerCore III Elite 25600
Best Portable Laptop Charger
A laptop won’t be easy to keep topped up with any old battery bank. Most don’t have enough juice or enough output power to handle it. But the Anker PowerCore III Elite 25600 does. This battery bank not only has 25,600mAh of juice stored inside, but it can output at a max of 60W to keep many an ultrabook topped up even while they’re running. It even has the extra capacity to charge up two additional devices over USB-A at a combined 15W while charging a laptop over its USB-C port.
The Anker PowerCore III Elite 25600’s big battery also means it needs some serious power to recharge, otherwise you’d be waiting all day for it to refill. So, Anker includes a 60W PD charging brick you can use to top it back up quickly.
6. Omni 20+
Best Portable Charger With AC Power
If you need a serious power bank to charge your laptop, you can’t go wrong with the Omni 20+. Anything plugged into this portable battery’s AC port can feed on up to 100W of power, which is more than enough to recharge even the biggest MacBook Pro and even some gaming laptops. It far outpaces any of the other AC plug-equipped batteries we’ve seen that usually top out at an 80W max.
There’s also a universal barrel port on the opposite side of the AC plus that outputs 100W for another laptop and a USB port for 60W power delivery. With 20,000mAh on hand, this portable charger will get you through a full day without ever having to touch a wall plug.
7. Anker PowerCore Lite 10000mAh
Best Slim Portable Charger
The Anker PowerCore Lite 10000mAh is essentially the little brother of our top pick above. It’s much smaller and lighter, to the point it’s almost the same size as your smartphone.
Although it has about half the amount of capacity compared to most 20,000mAh portable charger, this power bank can still juice up most modern smartphones more than 2.5 times over. And it only costs $30.
8. Anker PowerCore Magnetic 5K Magnetic Wireless Portable Charger
Best MagSafe Portable Charger
With the introduction of MagSafe charging for Apple’s iPhone 12 series, wireless charging just got a lot more effective for iPhone users. By using MagSafe-compatible chargers, the charger itself lines up better with the charging coil inside the iPhone to deliver power more effectively. This tech also makes charging while you’re on the go a lot more convenient, and that’s just where the Anker PowerCore Magnetic 5K wireless charger comes in.
This 5,000mAh portable battery pack may look a lot like the others you see on the market, but it’s hiding inside the requisite magnets to snap onto the back of an iPhone 12 and deliver a wireless charge. So, not only do you get to leave charging cables out of the equation, but you don’t even have to worry about trying to hold the charger and your phone together, since the magnets will handle that. If you want faster charging, you can still use a USB-C-to-Lightning cable. You can also use the charger to power up other devices besides your iPhone 12.
9. Anker PowerCore Nintendo Switch Edition
Best Nintendo Switch Power Bank
Anker is well-known in the power bank world, and its first Switch-approved charger looks pretty awesome. Unlike most stand-alone power banks, the Anker PowerCore lets you charge the Switch while you’re using it, which sets it apart from most power banks, and makes it a lot more useful too.
This officially-licensed charger is good for 1.7 charges of your switch, according to Anker, which should equal about 10 hours of playtime total. Even with the new Switch and Switch Lite extending the battery life of the original Nintendo handheld, a power bank is still an essential Nintendo Switch accessory.
Where to Get the Best Portable Chargers in the UK
What to Look for in a Portable Charger
When shopping for a power bank the most important spec you should look out for is capacity. This figure is always followed closely by a mAh unit, which stands for milliamp Hour. Given that most ultra-thin flagship phones have a 3,000mAh battery inside of them already, you’re going to want to find a portable charger with at least that much capacity, so you can double the battery life of your handset—unless of course, you’re looking for an extremely portable battery.
As you may have noticed most portable chargers these days come in a 10,000mAh capacity or higher, and this is pretty much the standard we see on power banks today. Portable batteries of this size should give you three-time or more charge while you’re on the go.
After considering the capacity of your charger, you’re going to want to think about charging speeds and the ports that deliver those speeds. Not all chargers are created equal, with some offering much higher charging capabilities with increased voltages and amperages. Some chargers may use standards like Power Delivery (PD) to connect with your device and send the maximum energy possible. So you’ll want to compare what output capabilities the charger has with the charging speeds your phone or other electronics supports. Also, check which ports offer which of those speeds, as you may find some ports offer much higher charging than others.
Doing this, you can find chargers that support the quick charging of your phone or even find chargers that will be capable of delivering enough power to keep even your laptop running for some extra time. You’ll also want to consider this same aspect but for the charger itself. After all, it has a battery that needs recharging, too. If you have a 20,000mAh battery, but it only supports 5W input, it’s going to take a long time to fill it back up.
Kevin Lee is IGN’s Hardware and Roundups Editor. Follow him on Twitter @baggingspam
Mark Knapp is a regular contributor to IGN and an irregular Tweeter on Twitter @Techn0Mark
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