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Friday, December 6, 2013

Product review: iFlash® Ultra Slim 3200mAh Portable Power Bank Backup External Battery Charger

Ultra Slim 3200mAh External Battery Pack looks very slick, it is quite thin. One unique feature of this external power pack is that it has a micro USB cable built into the side of the unit (see attached photo collage). It pops out of the side on a coiled cable, so if your mobile device takes a micro USB connector you don't need to carry any extra cables. This built-in cable delivers very rapid charging (see test results below). The power pack also has a port which allows you to connect other connectors, so it works with devices that have proprietary connectors as well.

I tested Ultra Slim 3200mAh External Battery Pack with Galaxy Nexus Phone (running ICS 4.0.4), Samsung Galaxy 7.7 Tablet (running ICS 4.0.4) and iPad Mini.

I received this power bank from the manufacture for an honest review be it positive or negative. Top reviewers are often asked to review new battery packs and one of the benefits of being asked to test different power banks is that it gives me an opportunity to compare them to each other using the same charging test, so I can compare them using "apples to apples" comparison. This set of tests allows me to provide unbiased results as the numbers speak for the performance of each unit.

I received two identical units black and white, having two of them allows me to test for consistency in manufacturing. Ideally I want to see the same performance numbers for both units, and this was the case with the two Ultra Slim power packs .

My methodology is to charge each mobile device on each port of the unit for 10 minutes and measuring how much each unit was charge in that 10 minute period. In addition I tested charging two mobile devices at the same time. Each line in the table below represents a separate 10 minute test. I use Battery App by Elvison to determine how each device recognized the charging source. 'AC' status means the charging is at full charging rate. 'USB' status indicates charging at a lower charging rate. 'Discharging' status means that the charging rate is below the power that the device is consuming so it slows down the discharge rate but does not re-charge.

➨ General features:
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Ultra Slim 3200mAh external battery weighs 3.2 oz. Its size is 2.25" x4.25 " x 0.375". The pack has one USB output port and one built-in micro USB cable.

In addition to the built-in micro USB cable Ultra Slim comes with a charging cable and two tips - micro USB and iPad. It did not have tips for Samsung Galaxy Tab or lightening connector for iPad Mini and I used my own charging cables during the tests. I am attaching a photo of the Ultra Slim 3200mAh during one of the test next to my tablet for size reference. You can find this photo by following 'customer photos' link under the main photo in this listing.

Ultra Slim 3200mAh looks very slick: it is thin, has a nice finish, and in general has a look and shape of a smart phone. It shows the charge level by displaying 25%, 50%, 75%, 100% on panel. When it is charging, however, this indicator gets turned off. But the charging continued even when the lights were off. This is a little different from how other external power pack indicators work (they stay on when you are charging),so I wanted to mention it. In addition to the charging capabilities, Ultra Slim has a built-in flashlight.

➨ Test Results:
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✔ Galaxy Nexus Phone
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White unit: AC ~~~~~ 6% change in charge in 10 minutes (built-in mciro USB charging cable)
Black unit: AC ~~~~~ 6% change in charge in 10 minutes (built-in mciro USB charging cable)

White unit: AC ~~~~~ 2% change in charge in 10 minutes (separate charging cable)
Black unit: AC ~~~~~ 2% change in charge in 10 minutes (separate charging cable)

✔ Samsung Galaxy 7.7 tablet
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White unit: AC ~~~~~ 1% change in charge in 10 minutes (separate charging cable)
Black unit: AC ~~~~~ 1% change in charge in 10 minutes (separate charging cable)

✔ iPad Mini tablet
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White unit: AC ~~~~~ 1% change in charge in 10 minutes (separate charging cable)
Black unit: AC ~~~~~ 1% change in charge in 10 minutes (separate charging cable)

➨ Key finding:
======================
✔ This power pack has great performance with built-in micro USB cable.
✔ Using your own charging cables the power pack works with both Galaxy 7.7 Tablet and iPad Mini but performance is on the slow side.
✔ I observed the same performance for both the black and white model, which is good and reflects consistency in the manufacturing process.

I highly recommend this power pack to people who can take advantage of the built-in micro USB cable.

You can find it on Amazon by following this link.


Ali Julia review ★★★★★

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