When it comes to your smartphone battery, having it run short while out and about is an underlying fear for all of us. We dread being in a place where we can’t plug in, and being out of touch when our phone or tablet dies out. With the slow death of removable batteries, a backup plan is in order. A battery pack is the easiest and most straightforward approach, here.
But who wants a heavy, ugly brick in their bag? With TYLT’s Energi+, you don’t have to worry much. Sleek, light, and modern, the Energi+ looks the part. Whether or not it actually performs, though, that’s what we’re here to find out.
The Energi+ is slimmer than you’d think. A bit taller than most we’ve tested, it’s also a good deal thinner. The black body with striking red band across the middle (it also comes in blue or grey in other variations) is stylish. Though there are pre-attached cables for charging devices, they tuck neatly away when not in use. What you’re left with is a battery pack that has a lot of style, and that’s always something to consider.
What really struck us was how exceedingly light it is. The Energi+, at 5400mAh, is incredibly light — so much so that we wondered if we mistakenly got a dummy device. Others we’ve tested in the same mAh range are noticeably heavier. We were happy to find that the Energi+ is not only stylish enough to be seen with, but also light enough to warrant slipping in a pocket or bag.
The attached cables — one Micro USB and one Lightning — fold around the corner and into a holster. That makes the need for toting additional cables moot, but if you do think you’ll need to charge other devices, TYLT has you covered. A USB out can support an additional device, and TYLT does toss in a USB to Micro USB cable for charging which can be used to this end. For such a stylish device, we’ll nitpick on TYLT’s included cable — it looks dated, with the ends being bulky and clumsy.
One thing we run into with battery packs is slow charging times. Though they’re meant to simply run juice to your device, they often do so at a much slower clip than just plugging in. TYLT’s Energi+ was shockingly fast, though. We tested it on several devices, and found that the Energi+ charged as fast as a wall charger. From absolutely zero battery, a Moto X charged back to 100% in 1:34 via a wall charger. It took the Energi+ 1:41. That’s a welcome sign, as one other battery pack we won’t mention took well over 2:30 to accomplish the same feat.
At 5200mAh, the Energi+ should be able to easily charge two devices from scratch. In testing the batter pack with an iPhone and Moto X, it charged each with juice to spare. It also didn’t lag with multiple devices, and stopped running power when the devices were charged. Again, Just over an hour and a half for the Moto X, and a touch over an hour (1:19) for the iPhone — in Airplane mode for both. Testing two Android devices, in which we had to utilize the USB out port yielded similar results. We had enough juice in reserves to charge the Moto X back to around 3/4 full before having to plug the Energi+ in.
The TYLT Energi+ is easily one of the best battery packs we’ve tested. It charges device in an appropriate amount of time, and doesn’t get bogged down with multiple devices. It’s stylish, light as a feather, and is just a great all-around performer. Best of all, for the Android-only crowd, there is the Energi, which skips the Lightning cable altogether.
Where we didn’t like the Energi+ was the included cable, in which the ends are bulky and really dated. There is also no adapter for AC power included, so you’ll have to use one from your smartphone or tablet. If you do, be prepared for a wait. We used a charger from a Nexus 4, and it took the TYLT well over 3:30 to charge back up. You’ll have better luck with a tablet charger, but the Energi+ will still ask for right around 2:45 to get back to full strength.
The corners where the cables snapped into their respective docks are also not sturdy, and we see scenarios where they could break pretty easily. Even with its slight challenges and flaws, the Energi+ is still a great battery pack. Great for keeping in a car, or tossing in the bag for a weekend trip where you don’t want to take the phone charger, the Energi+ is an easy pick-up for us.