Mophie Juice Pack Plus Review
Even though iPhone 4’s battery is a huge improvement on its predecessor, and better than most Android phones, it can still tough to make it a full day for us power users. Mophie’s Juice Pack Plus doubles iPhone 4’s battery, basically ensuring a real full day of juice. It’s what got us through the long, technology-intensive, days at CES–so we are fans.
What’s in the Box
-Mophie Juice Pack Plus
-Micro-USB cable for syncing/charging
Juice Pack Plus is a two-piece protective shell. There’s the main piece, which iPhone 4 slides into, and the top cover that locks iPhone in. The top cover has button overlays for iPhone’s volume and lock buttons. It has large cutouts for the vibrate toggle and headphone jack. The main piece of the case has a micro-USB input, which functions as the charging/syncing port, a toggle switch that turns charging on or off, and a button that displays the remaining battery life on four white LEDs. The On/Off toggle switch is color coded green and red. iPhone’s microphone and speaker are rerouted to the front of the phone on the very bottom. This had no adverse affect on call quality, and Mophie claims it boosts the speaker volume–this is just barely noticeable. The case’s frame is made of plastic and the back is covered in a soft-touch rubber. The rubberized back is comfortable in-hand, but shows oils and marks pretty easily.
Mophie’s Juice Pack Plus sports a 2000 mAh battery. iPhone 4’s battery is 1420 mAh, so Juice Pack has the potential to offer more than one full charge. The standby/charge toggle on the bottom of the phone means that you have total control over when the Juice Pack charges your iPhone. iPhone is still capable of syncing with iTunes while the Juice Pack case is on. When you use the micro-USB cable to connect Juice Pack to your Mac or PC, your computer will recognize iPhone the same as always. The four battery status indicator LEDs on the bottom of iPhone keep you from leaving home with a dead charger. Mophie claims that the Juice Pack Plus case can add 8 hours of talk time on 3G, 16 talk time on 2G, 7 hours of internet on 3G, 11 hours of internet on WiFi, 44 hours of audio playback, or 11 hours of video playback. These figures are all slightly greater than the battery specs that Apple claims for iPhone 4.
I can proudly confirm that Mophie’s Juice Pack Plus does, in fact, double iPhone’s battery life. With a fully charged Juice Pack, and even minimal usage, iPhone can go from 0% battery to almost 100% in a few hours time. In the first hour iPhone will go from 0% to 40%, it takes under 3 hours for a full charge. Juice Pack Plus may not always hit 100% if iPhone is on while it’s charging, but it will get very close. Your results may vary depending on usage, apps running in the background, and the wireless signals turned on. Since Juice Pack is about one full iPhone battery, each of the four indicator lights is 25% battery, which is helpful to know. Using iPhone to make calls and listen to music works just as well considering Juice Pack reroutes the mic and speaker to the front of the phone. The Juice Pack does add a noticeable amount of weight to iPhone, more-so than just a heavy case. It weighs 2.5 ounces, a bit over half the weight of iPhone 4. The weight is manageable as is the added bulkiness, it’s a small price to pay when you’re desperate for battery. Mophie also sells a lighter version, the Juice Pack Air, but it doesn’t pack as much juice. I’m personally not a big fan of the soft-rubber on the case, it feels nice but it makes it more difficult to get out of your pocket. It also shows grease, oil, and scuffs rather easily. The case just barely protrudes past iPhone’s face, offering minimal protection for the screen, but good protection for the rest of iPhone. It gets warm while
charging, but not abnormally hot.
Conclusion and Thoughts
Mophie’s Juice Pack Plus certainly makes it difficult to kill your iPhone in a days time by more than doubling iPhone 4’s battery life. Though it’s a bit thick, there is no iPhone 4 charging pack that is as stylish looking as Mophie’s. Plus, it comes in cyan, yellow, and magenta, which are way more fun-looking than the standard black on black. Unlike the dongle charging packs that attach to the bottom of your iPhone, you don’t have to worry about anything breaking while you’re on the move with Juice Pack Plus. It is also a very convenient way of charging your phone while you are home. Unfortunately, all iPhone battery packs add some considerable weight and/or bulk to your phone. Juice Pack Plus is no exception. You don’t have to use Mophie’s Juice Pack Plus as an every day case; it will pay for itself just using it on the important days that you can’t afford a dead phone. The Juice Pack Plus costs $99.95 and can be ordered from Mophie.com or Amazon. If you’re anything like us, you would recommend that Mophie renames the Juice Pack Plus to the Mophie Life Saver.
The Good: Doubles Battery, Protective Case, Still Capable of Syncing iPhone, Great Color Choices
The Bad: Large, added heft, no plug outlet adapter included