The other day I bought the above from Amazon to replace a portable charger that I gave to my mum. She saw that my sister had the 16,000mAh (Anker E5 – coincidentally same brand) portable charger on a day out and wanted that flexibility of powering ahead without fear of low battery or plug finding as well.
I’ve been a huge fan of portable chargers since the days when they weren’t all that common. The first one I ever used was from Proporta. Since then, I’ve had ones from several brands, including Nokia/Microsoft, ranging from pocket card size 450mAh to a whopping weekender at 30,000mAh.
This is the Anker Astro E6, which has 20,000mAh. It wasn’t all about capacity that I was after. I was impressed by my E4 (13,000mAh) and how quickly it was able to charge when on the go thanks to the 3A output over two ports.The E6 has a total of 4A over 3 ports.
Moreover, something I only ever saw with my Nokia/Microsoft portable chargers since they began – charging once you plug it in. There’s been a fair few times that I’ve plugged something in for emergency, and not realised I forgot to press the button.
The packaging is clean, simple and the same as the E4. Except that the E6 packaging is noticeably heavier.
There’s a microUSB cable, leaflet thingy and a cover to stop finger prints/scratches.
There are four LEDs that indicate how much charge is left. You press a button to activate it.
3 USB ports. Charge via MicroUSB. The LED light here is actually a flash light. More on that later.
Button. Press once to show how much power is left. Long press for flashlight.
Nothing on the back
E6 and E4 relative comparison
Thickness pretty much the same.
E6 in comparison to Nokia Lumia 1520.
There’s a E7 available from Anker as well that gives 25k mAh but that’s almost double the price on Amazon (£49.99)
Charging these beastly things does take a long time. Use a modern/newer MicroUSB charger just to make sure you aren’t waiting around unnecessarily. The E4 usually gets done overnight from flat. I have only just unboxed the E6 so I’m not sure.
Both these type of chargers just live in the bag that I take to uni/work. Now I can leave the other in the car, just for when the car charger plays up or decides to charge super slowly.
Here’s the E6 charging. The flashlight is also turned on (that’s not a charging light. Those are the LED lights above that’s more a strong electric blue). The flashlight is bright white.
The E6 was already about 75% charged out of the box. This can already roughly charge the likes of the Lumia 640 XL (3000mAh) 5 times from flat. Almost 7 times when fully charged up. For devices like Lumia, this could mean a weekend free from a plug, possibly even a whole week on regular/moderate use (charging nightly).
Bring multiple MicroUSB and charge multiple devices or save everyone else.
Or less than 1 day with my Note 4 and its epic black hole absorbing battery life feature.
I highly recommend this charger as it’s relatively cheap and performs really well. I would have given my mum this one if I had it (the E4 was borrowed by a friend at the time and was at the other side of the country).
These are perfect for travelling, days out, or even if you’re stationed in work but don’t want to leave your device open to a wall socket for anyone to pick up (leave it somewhere secure but charging at the same time).
I like the different capacity options, the quick charging, the auto charging once plugged in, the LED light and the multiple ports available. I don’t know if it’s too much to ask for a spare charger? Maybe it’s better in the long run to keep it cheap. I guess most of us have multiple MicroUSB chargers now. I think every room I have has at least two. I wonder if these could get the quick charge feature seen in some phones these days? (I don’t know if quick charge also means quick die as my Note 4 often feels like it has a 300mAh not 3k mAh battery. Then again, clearly, when using a regular charger you have the worst of both worlds as it takes longer then to charge than it does to stay active.
For emergency situations, possibly going out for a few hours only or for an evening and I’m not carrying a bag, then the likes of the Nokia DC-19 is perfect for the job as you can stick it in the same pocket as your phone (unless you’re wearing super skinny, non-stretchy jeans then you can’t even put your phone in your pocket either).