Over the last few days, while travelling around North Wales, I’ve been letting the GeoTag Photos app on my iPhone do its tracking thing. This has worked very well, with nicely accurate locations available for the numerous photos I’ve been taking. This works just about perfectly with Lightroom now – the app uploads the track file to Dropbox, and Lightroom can load it directly from there, making geotagging images incredibly easy.
The only trouble with leaving a app GPS on all day, especially when moving in and out of good mobile signal areas and generally using the phone, is that if you’re not careful, you can run out of battery. What you need is some variety of external power pack that can give the phone more charge.
I’ve previously tried one that attached directly to the phone in the form of a case. This worked, but had the slight disadvantage of being absolutely no use whatsoever when I upgraded to a new phone, as it didn’t fit any more. It also suffered from an unnecessarily flimsy on/off slider switch.
So this year, I did some looking, and some thinking, and decided to try something different, and this is it. What you get is a chunky plastic case with a power button, two full size USB ports and one micro USB, together with a short micros USB cable and a padded carrying case. You charge the lump over USB (either from a computer or whatever other USB charging plug you might have already) and then it’s ready for use. One of the two USB ports delivers 2.1 Amps, which is enough to give an iPad a rapid charge, the other is 1 Amp, which is plenty for iPhones, iPods, Kindles and any other variety of smartphone you might have. To charge Apple devices, you’ll need to use your own dock or Lightning cable – I actually added a 0.5m Lightning cable which I keep in the Recharge’s padded case (there’s a handy mesh pocket inside for cables, and a strap to secure the device).
Fully charged, it holds enough power to fully charge an iPhone no less than six times, which is useful if you’re on an extended trip without access to power. It will, according to the manufacturer, hold its charge for months, so you can charge it up and keep it in your bag for when it’s needed.
So far, I’ve used it ot top up the charge on my iPhone just once, and it did what it was supposed to – took it form 60% to 100% in well under an hour (I didn’t actually time it, so this isn’t a detailed technical review. Having used that much power, it’s still showing all four LEDs, suggesting it’s got loads more power in reserve.
There are various models in the range from 2,500mAH to 10,000mAH, so you can get something smaller (and cheaper) than this model if you prefer.
I bought mine in the Apple Store, as it was the kind of thing I wanted to look at before buying. The price was much the same as from online suppliers anyway.
So, early impressions: this is a good product which does what it claims. Full details from the manufacturer: