Our devices have a never-ending hunger for power – it’s their single greatest failing, in a time when they can do incredible things but still only last around a day of solid use in the best-case scenario. But Mophie has made a name for itself providing extra juice for your devices, and now they’ve got a new Powerstation XL model that packs a crazy 12,000 mAh, which can charge some smartphones up to eight times over.
- Battery lasts and lasts
- Intelligent amperage for less power wastage
- Two ports for charging
- A bit on the bulky side
Mophie’s Powerstation XL isn’t reinventing the wheel, it’s just making the wheel a lot bigger. Even design-wise, it resembles previous Mophie power pack devices, with a rubberized black top and bottom ‘sandwiching’ a silver wraparound rim. A button on the side will light up an LED indicator to tell you how much juice is remaining (to the nearest quarter), and two USB 2.0 ports on the top can charge up to two devices simultaneously, while a micro USB input is used to fill it back up once it’s empty.
The sandwich look is simple, good and a nice fit with Apple products, with which I’m generally using the Mophie Powerstation XL. Plus, the whole thing feels terrifically well-built, and you can imagine that if you pop the lid, it’ll be tightly packed edge to edge with battery cell units. Mophie’s backup batteries feel like they can survive a fall, which is more than you can say for a lot of the lower-priced models it competes with.
And the Mophie Powerstation XL also works as advertised. I used the partial charge it came with to fully reenergize a Nexus 5, HTC One and Nvidia Shield before it exhausted itself, and subsequent charges have managed to serve up multiple charges to my iPhone 5 while also topping up an iPad Air on the run. Plus, in terms of charge retention, you can easily have the XL in a bag for days without it losing a single dot of its energy meter to dissipation.
Mophie does good retention, and good overall life of the bank itself, which is why they can get away with asking for $130 for a backup battery and someone like IOgear charges a lot less. The XL is brand new, so I haven’t had the opportunity to test its longevity yet, but the Powerstation Pro I’ve had now for a couple of years still seems not to be noticeably diminished vs. when I first bought it.
The bottom line is that if you need serious backup juice in a relatively small package that’s bound to be reliable, Mophie’s latest delivers. It’d be great if someone made a smartphone that eliminated the need for such a thing, but until then, at least there’s the Powerstation XL.