Review: PowerSkin 2,000 mAh iPhone 4 Battery Case.

  • June 21, 2011 11:07 am


Our infatuation with extended batteries began all the way back with the iPhone 3G and it’s insatiable thirst for electrons. Battery cases such as the Incase Power Slider helped immensely by expanding time away from an outlet many additional hours. Fast forward a couple years and the market is a bit bigger now, with not only Incase but Energizer and Powerskin as well.

Today we’ll be looking at the PowerSkin 2,000 mAh battery case for the iPhone 4. Hop on past for the full review…

Fit & Finish

The general layout of the PowerSkin is pretty straight forward. On the bottom you’ll find your power button (press and hold 2 seconds to turn on/off) and 4 blue LEDs to display the remaining power of the built-in battery. Moving to the right side you’ll find a microUSB. The remaining openings and covered features include your volume up/down buttons, headphone port, and iPhone power/sleep button.

The general physics behind extending runtime for gadgets requires bigger battery cells and bigger cases. When strapped to the back of a phone, the figure of a brick is often portrayed. In the case of the PowerSkin 2000 the same image is portrayed here — It’s thick. Total thickness swells to 0.77″ from 0.37″ and weight balloons to nearly half a pound. People with smaller pockets won’t be putting this combo in their pants anytime soon. With that said, it is still a nice case.

We really like the soft touch rubber that completely wraps around the PowerSkin as well as the easy on/off characteristics of the case. Speaking of which, we want to commend PowerSkin for ditching the standard sliding case style that so many other case manufacturers have used for battery cases. Instead, PowerSkin uses a standard sleeve style form factor with stiffer rubber edges that hug your iPhone 4 tightly, yet keep it nice and secure. Kudos all around! An added bonus of the unique design means all the buttons and openings have ample protection and openings where needed.

Battery Life

The most important part of any device with built-in battery is of course the battery itself. On that front we can honestly say we’re quite pleased with the 2,000 mAh of power the PowerSkin 2000 provides. From a 50% iPhone 4 we were able to fully charge the phone and still have a solid ~45% of power left in the PowerSkin (as evident by 2 out of 4 blue lights being lit) in a little over 40 minutes. From a completely dead iPhone we coaxed managed to make it back up to 91% before the PowerSkin tuckered out and shut off.

**For those wondering why the PowerSkin failed to completely charge the iPhone 4 battery despite being 500 mAh larger — just know that battery charge transfer is hardly linear or simple. Taking a 2,000 mAh source and charging a completely dead 1,000 mAh host won’t necessarily mean your 2k source will still have 50% of it’s juice left over. Energy is lost in the transfer.

Conclusion

While we would have liked to see PowerSkin’s 2,000 mAh battery do a bit better job in charging up our iPhone 4, we’re still liking this case on extended trips into the world away from outlets. As for the physical design, we didn’t like the rather “sticky” nature of the rubber — lint accumulated rather frequently and quickly.

At $80 it’s not the most expensive iPhone battery case we’ve seen, though it’s certainly not the cheapest either. However, when taking into consideration the price, unique sleeve design, and admirable performance, we can’t see a good reason not to recommend this case.

If you’re a true road warrior, add the PowerSkin 2,000 to your list of must haves.

[PowerSkin]

Gadgetsteria Rating: 8.5/10


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Gadget lover, smartphone collector, and beer connoisseur. I've been writing about gadgets for three years now and loving every minute of it. Outside of the digital landscape, I enjoy being active outdoors. I'm always up for a good conversation, so feel free to drop me a line!