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Smart Battery Case for iPhone XS Max, first contact

One of the most sought-after accessories by users who use the iPhone intensively during their day, or when they travel, are the external batteries. It is a comfortable accessory, often almost the size of the same device, and they serve to charge not only our phones, but also other devices that we carry with us. Without a doubt, these are those occasions when we know that we will not have a load of energy soon when we need it most (or we miss them).

Precisely to prevent us from forgetting these batteries and also having extra protection, there are the battery-cases: those that have it incorporated in the design of the cover itself. The main drawback of these cases is that they increase the thickness of the phone by adding the storage panels on the back, and in some brands, they practically double the thickness and the total span of the iPhone.

Unlike other battery cases, the Apple one only bulges in the battery area, not expanding the whole set.

For the Apple phone, it is the brand itself that offers a model designed by them, from the iPhone 6 / 6s. The external appearance is practically the same as one of its own silicone cases, only that on the back it has a extra zone for battery, which in the case of the one offered by Apple does not fatten the entire size since only the battery area bulges. This concession in design also brings interesting novelties that no other brand offers.

Updated design

In the newly released model, Apple reposition the area of ​​the battery by lowering it to the base of the case – it no longer places it in the center of the case, which gave a somewhat weirder feeling. This new design is more natural and improves how we hold it with the hand, keeping the upper area with a thinner thickness.

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This new design also helps when inserting or removing the phone from it: at the end of the battery pack we have an elastomer coating that allows you to fold the upper part and place the iPhone on the side guides, so that it is perfectly fitted to the internal lightning connector of the base.

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The interior is lined with microfiber to avoid damaging the terminal, and the exterior has the same silicone as the rest of normal Apple cases. The side wingspan is hardly extended by this case, not even at the height of the Lightning connector. Once connected, and if we only looked at it from the front, it would be difficult for us to differentiate it from a traditional cover.

A case that manages itself

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Does not have no button and the only visual indicator we have is a small LED on the inside of the case, in case we want to charge the case separately from the phone. There is no button to check the battery level, since Apple has incorporated controls in iOS that allow you to see the battery charge from the lock screen or the Notification Center.

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The great advantage of the Smart Battery Case is the intelligent energy management in combination with iOS, totally transparent to the user.

This cover is self-managing – we don’t have to tell you when to start charging the phone or case, immediately upon inserting the phone, it will start to charge it and will charge it until it is always at 100%. At the same time, the battery takes advantage to charge internally more slowly – if we have the iPhone inserted – or at full speed if not. It is completely transparent to the user, and once the cover is on, we will not have to do anything else.

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In a few days we will share in Applesfera an article detailing the level and loading times – Apple tells us that we can reach 37 hours of conversation and 20 hours of navigation. In my first tests for this first contact, the case has reached 12% with a 12W charger in 10 minutes. According to the technical documentation of the case, these new batteries have a higher capacity than previous generations.

The new Smart Battery Cases now with wireless charging

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The great novelty of this generation is that now the cover has wireless charging compatible with the Qi standard – the same as the iPhone – so if we leave this case on top of a wireless charging base, the energy will start to charge both the iPhone and the case. We can also leave only the case on the wireless base, to charge it individually: we do not need to have an iPhone inside for this.

On a normal charging base (not fast) for the cover only, it achieves around 10% within 10 minutes of placing it in it. They are good numbers because we will also forget to carry a case and phone: when we put it to charge, both things will be loaded without us having to choose between the iPhone or the case – always giving the phone obvious priority.

Enhanced for those who need the extra battery and protection

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In hand, especially in the model for iPhone XS Max, the weight of the set is increased but the size – despite the bulk of the battery – does not increase as much as in other brands whose design surrounds the phone above and below. On the sides, as I have said, a similar proportion is maintained to any case and this makes it possible for us to hold it in the same way.

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Apple’s solution is perfect when we want to not worry about the battery, its charge, and how the energy is distributed between it and the phone. However, we cannot forget that it will increase the weight and thickness – the cover is aimed at those who do not reach the end of the day with the iPhone battery without recharging, or who wants to worry about running out of phone on trips.

On the increase and the hours it offers us, as well as the charging times, we will see them in a next article that, as I have said, we will offer you in the next few days when we test the case in depth on a day-to-day basis. As first impressions, I like the smart charging features and the addition of wireless charging – as well as the design (although controversial) does not completely occupy the entire perimeter of the device. A priori, for things like integration with iOS, energy management or wireless charging, it is the best case with built-in battery that we can buy for our iPhone -although not the cheapest (€ 149).