This powerbank looks good and costs a pretty penny – but is it worth it?
by Lorenz Keller
Left stranded with an empty smartphone battery and no power outlet in sight? A power bank will solve this problem in no time.
Power banks are mobile external batteries. Most offer several different ports, such as USB-A, USB-C, Lightning, or Micro-USB, so you can charge multiple devices at once. Suitable end devices include cell phones, tablets and headphones, but increasingly also smartwatches, drones, laptops and cameras. Recharging the mobile auxiliary battery is usually done by plugging it into a power outlet or USB port.
Aside from «normal Power banks» without additional functions, there are more and more solar and wireless power banks. Laptop power banks and outdoor power banks as well.
A solar power bank offers one or more built-in solar panels. These can be used to charge the bank directly via solar energy while on the move. Such models are particularly suitable for summer trips. With them you're not dependent on any power outlets, and they can bridge a few bottlenecks while outdoors. Naturally, such solar power banks can also be easily charged at home. In essence, the solar panels can be seen as additional functions.
A wireless power bank enables wireless charging of your devices via Qi charging – the wireless charging industry standard. This usually requires placing your phone or Qi-enabled Bluetooth headphones in the right place on the surface of the power bank. Such power banks can, of course, also charge your devices normally via USB cable, so the wireless capability is also an additional feature.
Laptop power banks are suitable – as the name suggests – for charging your laptop. Almost all such power banks feature the Power Delivery charging technology as well as one or more outputs with USB-C and offer at least 45 watts of power. More and more, this even reaches 60 or even 100 W, so that all notebooks (for example, even a MacBook Pro) can be charged in a rush. The best way to find out whether a power bank is suitable for your laptop is to check whether your notebook can be charged via USB-C or Thunderbolt. For this purpose, we recommend you choose a power bank with at least 45 watts of power.
Outdoor power banks are often very robust and are ideal in luggage on hikes or longer trips thanks to their rather small size. Many are also waterproof or water-resistant (IP certified) and have a solar panel and/or LED flashlight built in, so you're ready for any wilderness adventures.
The power or capacity of the buffer batteries is specified in milliampere hours (mAh). Usually, the larger the power bank, the greater its capacity. With us you will find a power bank model for every need. We offer energy storage from about 1,000 mAh to well over 40,000 mAh from various brands such as Anker, Aukey, Xtorm, Cellularline, Samsung, Sandberg or RAVPower. For example, you should be able to charge a smartphone about five to six times with a 20,000 mAh power bank.