How many of you can recognize this scenario? You’re out of your office, away in the field, or just off the job. You get a message from a boss or a colleague that urgently needs your attention, and need you to send off some data to them. Perhaps he needs some information, a file, to be sent over right away via email, or even internet fax. But you only have your mobile device with you, and you can see that the power is running out. There are no electrical sockets or any place to get a boost of charge. Going online, then opening the appropriate app, and then attaching the file—that could eat up a whole lot of battery power, and you find yourself not having enough power to do everything that needs to be done.

This is what external battery packs are for. In the off-chance that you don’t have enough power to send something or even just continue using your device for one reason or another when it is urgently needed, battery packs will be there to save the day. And what’s better is that, with the holiday season coming up, this is one gift that you know your gadget-owning friends will be glad to get and use.

What do I look for?

There are a number of external battery packs available in the market these days. The important things to consider when purchasing one is:

  • How much power does it have? Battery packs declare straight away how much power they can store. The larger the amount of power it can store, the bigger the charge you can get out of it onto your mobile device. Be sure to get one that is capable of at least going over three fourths of your device’s battery power.
  • How long does it take to charge as well? The larger the battery power, the longer it usually takes to charge. There’s no point in owning a battery pack that has to be left charging all day first before you tote it along; that kind of defeats the purpose of being there for you “anytime” right?

Some great battery packs out there

There are many good external power sources out there, but there are two that are particularly noteworthy:

The Hyper Juice External Battery

  • Hyper Juice has two 10-watt ports that allow you to charge two USB-powered devices simultaneously. It has a display screen that shows you how much power is left on the device and other essential information. It is capable of storing 100WH of power. By comparison, a MacBook Pro’s battery stores only 50Wh. Imagine how much power it can give your device!

POP – The Portable Power Hub

  • But if we’re talking about lots of power in small packages, POP is the one to beat. Introduced earlier this year as a Kickstarter project, POP can power four devices at the same time. It possesses a mindblowing 25,000 mAh battery, which is well over what most other battery packs can handle (many being around the 3,500 mark). It can charge virtually any device you can connect it to (it has a variety of ports) and the company plans to retail it for USD149.