Photokina 2014 highlights

Superfast external phone batteries recharge in 15 minutes

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August 4, 2014

The Ultrapack Go (left) and Petalite Flux (not to scale) can suck in enough power for a fu...

The Ultrapack Go (left) and Petalite Flux (not to scale) can suck in enough power for a full day's smartphone use in just 15 minutes

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As our dependence on the smartphone has grown, there's been plenty said about the battery life of said devices. Thankfully, external charging solutions provide a way to keep powered up and now there are two that are laying claim to being the quickest of them all. Both the Unu Ultrapack Go and Petalite Flux are pocket-sized portable batteries promising power enough for a day's smartphone use from a 15 minute charge.

First cab off the rank is the Ultrapack Go, which measures 3.95 x 2.05 x 0.68 in (10 x 5.2 x 1.7 cm) and weighs 4.5 oz (127 g). Packing a 3,000 mAh battery, it can be charged to full in 30 minutes, though its developers claim this is more than the typical user will need, with 15 minutes of charging providing 2,000 mAh of power that should be enough juice for a day's use. It comes with a cord to connect to a smartphone or tablet via Micro USB, but is also compatible with other cords, such as an iPhone charge cable. It also features a small screen displaying power and time left to recharge.

The tubular Petalite Flux, on the other hand, weighs in at 3.35 oz (95 g) and measures 3.54 x 1.18 x 1.18 in (90 x 30 x 30 mm). While this smaller size will mean easier transport, it does concede a little ground in battery capacity to the Ultrapack Go. With a capacity of 2,600 mAh, the Petalite reaches a 100 percent charge in 15 minutes and also powers your smartphone or tablet through Micro USB or Apple's Lightning connector.

The Petalite also features four LED lights to gauge the level of charge

Instead of a screen, the Petalite also features four LED lights to indicate the level of charge. All four illuminated indicates a whole day's charge for 90 percent of phones on the market, while three lights, or a 75 percent charge, is claimed to be sufficient for a day with an iPhone 5s.

While the Ultrapak uses a standard wall adapter, the Petalite comes with a specialized charging dock. Its developers say this was necessary, as "pushing this amount of amperage through a standard USB port would damage it within seconds."

These lightning-quick external chargers won't be suitable for all, but they could prove handy for those whose busy lifestyles leave them with perpetually drained batteries and little time to charge.

The Ultrapack is priced at US$60 and available for pre-order now via the product page below, with the company hoping to begin shipping on August 25. If the compact Petalite is more to your liking, then you will have to wait a little longer as the company is launching an Indiegogo campaign at the end of the month and is yet to detail pricing.

Sources: Unu, Petalite

About the Author
Nick Lavars Nick was born outside of Melbourne, Australia, with a general curiosity that has drawn him to some distant (and very cold) places. Somewhere between enduring a winter in the Canadian Rockies and trekking through Chilean Patagonia, he graduated from university and pursued a career in journalism. He now writes for Gizmag, excited by tech and all forms of innovation, Melbourne's bizarre weather and curried egg sandwiches.   All articles by Nick Lavars
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3 Comments

Your opening statement comments that external chargers are a dime a dozen and then when it comes to the price of this device it comes out to be $30.oo US. That is certainly a far cry from a dime a dozen. I could by a dozen of the other devices for a dime, charge them in rotation to always have several fully charged and never have to worry about battery charge?

tigerprincess
5th August, 2014 @ 02:28 pm PDT

I'm surprised this technology is taking so long to get to the phone market.

G8 chemistry Lithium Polymer batteries have been available for R/C cars, planes and helicopters for over a year and can be fully charged in 5 minutes if your charger has the grunt and the "smarts" to do it.

warren52nz
5th August, 2014 @ 03:30 pm PDT

what is this some kind of joke the phone I have I hate it because the battery runs out in a day your are saying this as if it is a one big deal why don't you go back to the drawing board again and make batteries last a bit longer.

James Diamond
6th August, 2014 @ 11:41 am PDT
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