Murphy’s Law applied to mobile devices dictates that when you need the device the most, the battery will run out. A charging strategy for your mobile devices is a good defense against Murphy’s Law. Your charging strategy might include buying a second battery and making sure it is always charged, or it might involve buying a second charger, or always carrying a USB cable to recharge the device. Another tool for recharging mobile devices is a portable charger, like the Engergizer “Energi To Go” Portable charger. I recently picked up the XP2000 model at my local Best Buy for $39.99, as shown in the following picture.
The Energizer Portable Charger comes with 6 tips, charging cable, and carrying case.
The rechargable power pack comes with 6 tips for the Apple iPhone and iPods, LG Phones, Samsung phones, Nokia phones, a Mini USB tip for Blackberries, HTC and Motorola phones, and a Micro USB for the Nexus One and Barnes and Noble Nook. Energizer promises to provide 2 free tips per year for the life of the charger, and when I registered the charger I ordered a tip for the Zune HD and the BlueAnt Q1 headset. While the tips are free, you do have to pay shipping, which only cost $3.25. The Energizer recharger is actually a rebrand of XpalPower’s products and the tip orders are processed and shipped by Xpal.
To charge a device, you plug in the appropriate tip into one end of the charging cable, which has a USB connection on the other end to plug into the power pack. I used the power pack to recharge an iPod Touch, which was completely drained, and it took one hour and fourty minutes to recharge the iPod. The power pack has four LEDs to indicate it’s charging strength, with a button to press to check the strength as well as turn the charger on or off. After recharging the iPod the power pack was completely drained and it took about four hours to recharge. Unfortunately, the power pack does not come with an AC adapter. To recharge the power pack you plug the Mini USB tip on to the charging cable, plug that into the power pack, and then plug the USB connection into a computer, or USB hub. I have a couple of AC-to-USB dongles that I can use and I think Energizer should include one with the power pack.
Energizer sells many different models of the power pack, each with different size batteries to charge digital cameras, video records, netbooks, and notebook computers. Their web site does not indicate which power pack will recharge an iPad. When I plugged my XP2000 model power pack into my iPad, I saw no indication that the iPad was charging. In a response to an e-mail I sent asking which model works with an iPad, I was told the XP2000 does trickle charge the iPad, and I would need an XP4000 model or higher to completely charge an iPad. Xpal recommended the XP18000 charger, which is their largest power back, as having the most battery power possible.
While it is unfortunate that my XP2000 will not fully charge my iPad, I am very happy to have it for all of my other gadgets. The offer to provide two free tips, along with the wide range of tips that ships with the Energizer Power Pack makes it a good value, and because it is an Energizer product you will find it many retail locations.