juicepackfrontThere is always going to be one thing you can count on with a smartphone, it is eventually going to run out of power. 3G, Surfing the Internet, GPS, Bluetooth, and WiFi all take their toll on a smartphones battery. Sure, there are things you can do to extend the life of the battery that was supplied with the device. Just turn off all the things I mentioned above would be a huge help. But what fun would that be? We didn’t buy the device to simply use the cool features of it “moderately”. Hence, they call use “power users”. I am going to stream Netflix over 3G, use Facetime, and pound on my device with every feature it has to offer. I know what you are saying. Better stay close to an AC outlet. There are other options to power back up your device. There are some external batteries. Big and bulky they require a sync cable to transfer the precious life blood back into the device to keep you going. That’s just a pain in the rear end. I’ll pass. What I want is something to recharge my device but also be discrete and provide protection at the same time. I want a built in battery supply within a well built and functional case. There are a lot of options to choose from. They range in price and quality. So if you have been curious about powering back up your iPhone 4 and provide a great look and feel as well as some added protection. Read on because today we are going to review the mophie juice pack air for the iPhone 4.

Introduction

The mophie juice pack air for the iPhone 4 incorporates 1500 mAh battery in a a very nice two piece case to not only provide extra batter power, but also extra protection to your iPhone 4.   The mophie juice pack air has sold more than a million cases for the iPhone and iPod and has a case available for every version. mophie was also the first to receive the “Works with iPhone” case. The mophie juice pack air will double the mAh available to power your device as the iPhone comes from Cupertino with a 1420 mAh Li Polymer battery that has up to 7 hours talk time in 3G mode, 14 hours talk time in 2G. If a power fast is what you need, you can get some “Quick Speed” power for your iPhone 4 with mophie’s 500 milliamp fast charge technology.

What do you get in the box

  • Extended Battery/case
  • USB Sync Cable
  • Package and instructions

Specifications

mophie juice pack air for iPhone 4:

  • Standby Time: Up to 270 hours
  • Talk Time: Up to 6 hours on 3G | Up to 12 hours on 2G
  • Internet Use: Up to 5 hours on 3G | Up to 9 hours on Wi-Fi
  • Audio Playback: Up to 36 hours
  • Video Playback: Up to 9 hours

Other product specifications are as follows:

  • Product Dimensions: 5.07 in x 2.51 in x 0.68 in; 2.5 oz
  • Battery Capacity: 1500 mAh
  • Estimated Shipping Weight: 1 lbs
  • Item model number: 1145_JPAXP4, 1146_JPAXP4, 1147_JPAXP4, 1148_JPAXP4
  • Shipping: This product ships world wide
  • Product Category: Cell Phone External Battery
  • Product Compatibility: Apple iPhone 4, iPhone not included
  • Package Content Included: juice pack air™, USB-micro cable, User’s Manual
  • Patent: Pat. D616360, Pat. D616361

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Battery

As stated a few time already, the mophie juice pack air comes with a rechargeable lithium polymer 1500 mAh battery which is advertised to be rechargeable for over 500 cycles. With the iPhone 4’s 1420 mAh battery I generally get a full 12 hour day of moderate use. By by adding the mophie juice pack air, I did not double the life as expected by more than doubling the mAh available for use when I left the mophie power pack on charge with a full iPhone battery charge. I got usually another 8 hours of usage.

But by turning the mophie off, running the iPhone battery down to 10%-20%, I was in fact able to completely recharge the iPhone battery in about 3-4 hours time. The mophie totally spent, I was able to get another 12 hours out of my iPhone. I could not get the iPhone battery to fully charge 100% unless I was not using the device for those 3-4 hours. Using the device while recharging only got me to 75% to 80% iPhone battery recharge with the morphie totally spent.

In my case this works well for traveling or in the evenings when usage usually tapers off to recharge my iPhone back to 100%. This is also how mophie recommends using the juice pack air. Let your iPhone’s battery drain down to 20% and then use the juice pack air to recharge it.

Case

I really liked this case for a number of reasons. First, the mophie juice pack air really compliments the iPhone 4. With a black front and back, and silver sides, it looked to be a natural extension of Apple’s intended design. The back of the case is a soft rubberized material that did not collect fingerprints like the back of the iPhone 4 does. It also made it easy to hold on to and resisted sliding on flat surfaces like my car’s counsel while driving. The rounded back  made holding the device very easy and made picking the device up a snap.

The two piece case fit together a little tricky at first. As you will see in my video, it is a little difficult to line up. But it fit well and snapped together securely. The bottom of the case is where the passive switch is to charge the iPhone 4 with the 1500 mAh batter. The switch was very good quality and I liked the red indicator at the base of the switch. The mophie juice pack air also does not require the Apple Sync cable or similar plug. It uses a mini USB style plug to both recharge the juice pack air and sync your device. What is a really cool is that it will both sync and charge your device simultaneously. Something I really liked.

I want to also touch on the sound enhancement that you get from mophie in the juice pack air. I have found myself on more than one occasion unable to hear my iPhone 4 through the OtterBox Defender case that use on a daily basis. But with the juice pack air, the diverted and enhanced acoustic sound really made a difference. AS shown in the picture above, the two front slots are the speaker provisions for the rerouted sound. I actually did not see this in my initial read on the mophie juice pack air but only found out about it when I went to stream Netflix! What a great  feature!

Now here might be a down side for some of you folks out there with big fingers like me. I found it difficult, but not impossible to get my fingers in the volume cutouts as well as the power button on top.  I had to angle my fingernail in such a way that I could reach the buttons. This is not a deal breaker, but it was pain in the rear. The other issue some of you might have is if your wired headphones have the larger style 3.5mm plug and not of similar size as the Apple supplied headphones. I use a Bose wired headset which did have the thinner plug style, but again anything larger will definitely be a problem with the juice pack air cutouts.

Conclusion

I really like the mophie juice pack air and even though I still feel the $79.99 price tag is a little high, your return on investment will be well paid for with a quality case and recharging system. It is very clear that mophie knows how to build a high quality case and deliver performance and this is a case I would recommend. With only a few things I didn’t like about the case, the juice pack air is the best extended battery case I have used thus far for the iPhone 4.

PROS

  • Excellent look and feel to the case. Blends in well with the iPhone 4’s existing color scheme
  • 1500 mAh battery was enough to fully charge  the internal battery doubling battery life.
  • Nice LED battery meter
  • Excellent acoustic sound improvement.

CONS

  • Little price than competitors at $79.99
  • Does not come with screen protector
  • Difficult to press the buttons on the device through the cutouts.

Rating: 4.5/5

Head on over to mophie’s website for more information and to purchase: mophie juice pack air for the iPhone 4

2 COMMENTS

  1. I have the Juice Pack Air with the iPhone4. Every once in a while, the switch does not work. So if the iPhone drains to 50%, I switch the Juice Pack on and nothing happens. Push the button and not lights. Once, I plug in the usb until I get the charge indicator on the iPhone and then unplug it, it works. Shows full charge on the case and it starts to charge. It’s like it goes to sleep and I can’t wake it up unless I plug in the usb to give it a “jolt” to wake it up. Rather annoying when I’m not around a power source or micro usb. Not sure if this has happened to anyone.

  2. I have the exact same problem. I don’t know when exactly it goes to sleep but it defeats the purpose of having power on tap when you have to jump start the thing with the charger. I have been asked to send it back for a replacement but I suspect the replacement will do the same.

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