Everyone should have an external backup battery for their tablet. These can come in handy during long trips, but can also be a lifesaver during long power outages.
A good option is the RAVPower Deluxe, which includes 14000mAh of storage.
Build and Design
No one has invented a miracle solution for batteries yet, so getting a lot of capacity still takes a large accessory. RAVPower’s offering is 4.8 x 3.2 x 0.8 in. and 10.2 oz., which is enough to add a considerable amount of bulk to a gadget bag or purse. Still, the designers did what they could to keep this from being a brick: the edges are tapered and the casing is smooth plastic.
Click images at right for a larger versions.
On the front of this add-on, near the ports, are a set of blue LEDs to indicate battery charge, as well as the power button.
As a bonus, an LED flashlight is also built into the RAVPower Deluxe for when the user has no other source of electricity.
In addition, RAVPower included a pair of short cables that can be fitted with various adapters to enable a range of devices to be hooked to this external battery. The adapters are for mini-USB, micro-USB, Apple 30-pin, and Nokia’s proprietary format.
With the exception of the micro-USB one, these are for formats that’s aren’t widely used any more. Those with more recent tablets and smartphones will need to use the charging cables that came with their device.
One of the full-size USB ports puts out 2 amps of power, so it can more rapidly recharge devices like the various Apple iPad models. The other puts out 1 amp, and can be used for a variety of other products, from smartphones to mobile access points.
Apple’s iPad Air has a battery of 8,820 mAh. The RAVPower Deluxe has 14000mAh of capacity, which means that, in theory, it should be able to give 1.6 full recharges to this tablet. In our tests, it came very close to this, generally being able to give Apple’s latest roughly a change and half.
The Air is capable of going to about 12 hours of continuous use on its own, so when this external battery is added the tablet can run for up to 30 hours.
The Dell Venue 8 Pro has a 4830mAh battery, and in our tests the RAVPower Deluxe was able to give one 2.5 complete recharges.
Smartphones, which have much smaller batteries, can be recharged far more times by this accessory.
Recharging the RAVPower Deluxe itself takes quite a bit of time, so plugging it in overnight is suggested. The necessary USB cable is included, but not the wall plug — the user is expected to employ the one that ships with most tablets and phones.
While hardly a svelte accessory, the RAVPower Deluxe’s ability to greatly extend the battery life of tablets and smartphones makes it a worthwhile purchase.
Anyone who has ever been without electricity for several days knows the advantages of a powerful external battery like this one. And those setting off for trans-continental airline flights can appreciate it, too. Especially as it costs just $40.