The Mophie Juice Pack does exactly what you think it does–provides an extra bit of juice to your iPhone or Touch. The moment you start running out of oomph on your device you can plug in the juice pack and charge that phone of yours up while you’re on the go. It came in really handy on my trip to Europe. Between hopping flights and train rides and the complete lack of power outlets on the trains, this juice pack really saved me a couple of times.
I would like to clear up a couple of issues I had with the device, but before I go on, I would like to reiterate that the mophie juice pack did exactly what I expected it to do, and I’m very happy to recommend it highly to all of you. That being said there are two small quirks about the device that I would like to see addressed.
Either through my own ignorance, or my being completely misled, I originally thought that this device would act as a secondary battery essentially doubling the lifetime of a full charge. While it did that, it did it in a way that I did not expect. I thought that the battery would remain on reserve until it was needed, and then kick in a charge at my greatest moment of need, but to my knowledge this is not what happens at all. I’m not an engineer, so I can’t state definitively how the device works electronically, but over the course of two weeks I noticed a trend big enough to deduce that the mophie juice pack doesn’t remain on reserve at all. Instead, it immediately begins charging the phone. This is both good and extremely bad. The good part about this is that the juice pack doesn’t give the phone the ability to get dangerously low that you run the risk of a power down in the advent of a disconnection between the juice pack and the phone. The downside, the battery pack will run itself dead pretty quickly. Through my amazing powers of deduction, I realized that the juice pack will continue to provide a charge to the phone regardless of whether the phone needs it or not. The juice pack never once lasted the night, and by the morning the device was completely dead. After realizing this was occurring regularly over a couple of uses, my approach to using this device changed drastically.
I started using it in the exact same way I would use a wall outlet, plugging it in just before the phone was about to die, then unplugging it when it was fully charged. Use it to top up your phone when you need it, and not to try double your battery life.
The second major issue I would like to see fixed didn’t reveal itself until I adapted my usage patterns for the device. As I mentioned above I stopped leaving it attached to my phone and started to just plugging it in when I needed it. No big deal. But, after a couple days of having it in my back pack while I tripped around Vienna I started to think about the adapter being completely unprotected in anyway, kicking around my back pack, free to bang and smash into anything else in my bag. The case itself seems sturdy enough to take a pretty brutal beating, but the dock connector plug that it uses to connect to the phone was a completely different story. I would love to see a small insert or cover that would allow me to preserve the integrity of the plug.
On a super cool note, the juice pack recharges with a mini usb power cord. At first I thought that it would be solely used to charge the phone, but, you can also use a USB/mini USB cord to plug the phone into your computer to both charge and access iTunes like you would with the proprietary cord. That’s attention to detail I can get behind. Any time I have to pack less cords I’m a happy man.
As a whole, the device works completely as advertised, and it is by far the best “juice” pack I’ve used to date. The price tag is a bit steep, and being all about the consumers, we’d love to see them come down a bit. But, if your talk time is as important to you as it is to me then you’re more then willing to pay the price to ensure your clients can reach you when they need you the most.