Saturday, June 07, 2014

Quick Review: Anker Portable External Battery

**This review has changed since originally posted 03 April. See below**

Just a quick post in regards to a recent purchase; the Anker 2nd generation Astro 6000mAh portable external battery (pictured left).

While I have a car charger usually with me in the vehicle, sometimes you might need to quickly charge your phone (or other device) while out in the field and this is where this particular product comes in handy.

I chose the Astro 6000mAh model because I don't necessarily plan on charging up too many devices on the go. The blurb promised I should be able to charge a phone two to three times from a fully-charged battery and that is pretty much all I am likely to use it for.

However, larger models are available. The 9000mAh has two USB outs, while the 12000mAh has three, so charging multiple devices simultaneously should be no problem if you are that way inclined.

What I got was the battery unit, a micro-USB cable, and a mesh carry bag. 

I've had this now for a couple of weeks and it pretty much does as it says on the box. I've found the charging of my phone to be quite fast from the unit and it looks as if I'll get two-and-a-bit complete charges from a full battery.

The battery also charges from a USB port, eliminating the need for other cables.

Now a word of caution. I have read that some users have had issues with the battery not taking a charge after several days or weeks of use. This has not happened to me and, fingers crossed, it won't. However, tales of woe from other users stay at the back of my mind every time I plug it in to charge...

Anyway, here's my verdict:

The Good   
  • Size. It's reasonably small (I could have purchased the mini if so inclined).
  • Price. Only the cost of a couple of meals. Or one reasonably-priced meal and a drink or two
  • Weight. Relatively light.
The Bad
  • Actually, nothing bad to say at this juncture... **That's changed, see below**
The Indifferent
  • Bad Press. If you can believe all you read on the internet, there are a significant number of people whose purchases turned out to be faulty. 
Overall, because it functions exactly as I need it and I have yet to encounter any issues, I'll give it an A. If anything happens to change my opinion, I'll let you know.

**Changes to above review**

A funny thing happened on the way to charging up my Anker external battery yesterday. Yep, the damn thing no longer works. I've tried several different USB cables as well as other ports but the battery sits there steadfastly refusing to take a charge.

I haven't even had it three months!

So, I tried contacting the online vendor from which I made my purchase. They seem to be no longer operating. Hrm...

Next, I sent Anker Support an email. This is their response:

Unfortunately we do not provide any warranty claim for orders that are not purchased directly from AnkerDirect. May I suggest to go back to the original seller that sold you the product and check their warranty instead please? 

Which, while kind of understandable, still sucks for me! Particularly since I already told Anker that the local distributor seems to have shut up shop.  

Reluctantly, because the thing worked splendidly right up to the point where it just stopped working altogether, and also partially due to the lack of any real support from the manufacturer, I'll just have to amend my rating to an E.

E for 'Unhappy'.


  1. An acquaintance produced one of those (the mini I believe) during our outing at the Wellington Cup. While I was busy switching off various functions on my phone to preserve battery life, he simply plugged this in and kept trucking away. A brilliant device that easily fitted in his pocket!

  2. I bought a RAVPower Luster 6000mAh extra battery for my iPhone 5s . The design is nice and compact with good capacity. Charged my 5s 3 times. The RAVPower Dynamo-on-the-Go is a deceptively small power bank. It measures less than 3 3/4" x 1 3/4" x 7/8" and weighs about 5 oz. The LED flashlight is a nice bonus--perfect for finding keys in a purse or to use in an unfamiliar hotel room in the middle of the night without having to turn on a light. It is really a necessity for traveling and to keep in the glove compartment but it's also handy to have on hand when you forget to charge your cell phone or MP3 player overnight and need to charge it on-the-run. I highly recommend these for peace of mind as well as convenience. You can visit this website If you are interested in it and I hope it helps a bit.