If you are not familiar with Anker, my suggestion would be to get out from under the rock you are living in and check out their products! LOL!!! Ok, all jokes aside, Anker is a leading innovator of charging/smart devices for a variety of uses. Anker’s products are sold and used across the globe, and are best known for their charging cables, chargers, and power banks. Fusing high capacity and quick charging with porability, Anker has created power banks able to charge the average high capacity 18650 battery (like the 3600mAh Olight batteries) almost 14 times on a single charge. That’s right, 14 TIMES. Of course, you can only pack so much power as you start to shrink in size. In this case, the lipstick-sized Powercore+ Mini is about as small as it gets when you look at reliable, powerful charging banks that you can take with you on the go.
I can’t tell you how many times during vacation and trips that a powerbank has saved my phone from certain (battery) death. Or when the power went out during a hurricane. Or when we went on what ended up being an extended camping trip. I can go on and on. While many seasoned preppers keep the larger powerbanks handy, I think that the Anker Powercore+ Mini is an often overlooked piece of gear that can really improve your day to day preparedness, and here’s why:
What I Like About It: It’s compact. It’s lightweight. It comes in a variety of colors. The design is streamlined and simple, using quality battery cells from Panasonic. The Powercore+ Mini fits 3350mAh of charging power in the palm of your hand, and can be taken almost anywhere you go. In fact, it’s so compact that you can even connect and charge your phone, placing both in your pocket and not find it noticeable as you charge on the go. It has an aluminum body that feels lightweight, yet tough. As if that were not enough, the product has an 18 month warranty against defects in craftsmanship and operation. Operating the Powercore+ mini is simple and straightforward, with the power button/charging port/micro USB port/charging button all together on one side. Once you have charged the powerbank, connect your phone with your charging cable and press the power button to charge. That’s it, nice and simple!
Measuring the Powercore+ mini, I came up with 3.7″ long, and just under 1″ wide (0.9″). As you can see, it fits nicely in the company of my Olight S2 Baton and 8gb USB Drive:
The box containing the powerbank is compact and easy on the eyes. Contents include the welcome Guide, warranty card, microUSB cable, mesh storage bag, and a plasti-wrapped Anker Powercore+ Mini.
Plug in the Powercore+ mini using a 1 amp (or better) adapter and the included microUSB cable to begin charging. You will see the light at the end of the powerbank light up an amber color to indicate it is receiving a charge.
After approx 3-4 hours, the amber light will turn green, indicating the power bank has been topped off and is ready to put in some work!
The length of the PowerCore+ Mini is 3.7 inches and it has a width/thickness of 0.9 inches.
What I Don’t Like About It: My first gripe is really due to the fact that companies (in general) who make power banks seems to not realize that a large share of users have iPhones or iPads. While the power bank does ship with a charging cable, it’s microUSB and will not work on iPhones/iPads. I know, I can always just use the one that came with the phone. However, would it really cost much more to make an adapter compatible with Apple products? They sell charging cables for Apple products already so they are already well versed in mfi / lightning cables needed to charge their line of phonts/tablets, so why would they not at least bring an adapter? Another issue I have found is that phones have been charging using wall chargers that utilize a charging speed of 5v/2.0Amp. I know this because I pulled the wall charger that belonged to my old Samsung S4 and that’s what it states on there. The charging speed for the PowerCore+ Mini is 5v/1.0Amp, so don’t expect it to rapidly bring your electronics back to 100% quickly, even if they market the ‘PowerIQ’ as a feature that intelligently identifies your advice to deliver its fastest possible charge speed, most are optimized to run much higher than 1.0Amp. In its’ defense, a large share of power banks still run off 1.0Amp and if we look at the market share of products that are of similar dimensions as the Powercore+ Mini, many run sub-1.0Amp…. so I guess this can be labeled as fast ‘enough’. Not lightning quick, not ‘trickle’ slow – right in the middle.
Final Thoughts: For the size, this is one of the most compact external power banks around, and certainly one of the most quality products at an affordable price. While I own a desktop PC and use Windows 10 at home/work, I use an iPhone and my iPad frequently, and would like to see a cord or adapter included in the packaging. It really isn’t alot to ask especially considering Anker does not even supply their own wall adapter. It’s not going to charge a whole lot, but 3350 mAh is almost as much capacity as the rechargeable 18650 batteries I currently use in my Olight flashlights, and it’s good to know that it will charge my phone fully and still have some juice left over for later. Regardless of things I don’t like about it, I stand by my statement and believe this is an often overlooked piece of essential daily carry gear that will consistently help anyone in need of a good charge, and for that reason – I recommend it. Check it out Here on Amazon , and if you are looking for something with more capacity, and are OK with a slightly larger size, check out the Anker PowerCore 5000 Here On Amazon .