Friday, June 21, 2024

One of the most iconic iPhone accessories is back — and it’s great

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Mophie Juice Pack for iPhone 15 Pro.Christine Romero-Chan / Digital Trends

In the early days of the iPhone, one of the most popular accessories was the Mophie Juice Pack battery case. This was one of the first and original battery cases for the iPhone that would extend the battery life of your phone to help you get through the day. It was essential when traveling, as you’d likely go through your iPhone’s battery much faster and might not be near an outlet.

Contents

  • The return of a classic
  • A good design, plenty of battery, and more
  • Still a worthy iPhone accessory

The Mophie Juice Pack became a staple for many people and spawned numerous copycats, but once Apple introduced MagSafe with the iPhone 12 line, it seemed like the need for battery cases dissipated. In fact, it has been a few years since Mophie last released a Juice Pack case for the iPhone. But the Mophie Juice Pack has finally returned, and it’s currently available for the iPhone 15, iPhone 15 Pro, and iPhone 15 Pro Max.

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The return of a classic

Christine Romero-Chan / Digital Trends

As someone who has had every generation of the iPhone, the Mophie Juice Pack has always been one of my favorite accessories. It was especially handy when I traveled or was away from home for an extended period of time.

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But in 2015, Apple released it’s own Smart Battery Case, which I liked for its smart integration with iOS and the addition of the shutter button. Though the bump was not liked by many, I put up with it for the other conveniences.

Then Apple got rid of that once it introduced MagSafe and launched the MagSafe Battery Pack. This started a new era of accessories in the form of battery packs that were attached via MagSafe. As convenient as those are, sometimes it’s a little awkward when using your phone while it’s charging, especially if the battery pack is a little thicker.

Christine Romero-Chan / Digital Trends

That’s why I liked having a battery case. The Mophie Juice Packs were pretty slim for their size, and they added some protection to your device, which battery packs don’t.

For the iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Pro versions, Mophie put a 2,400mAh battery inside the Juice Pack. On the iPhone 15 Pro Max version of the Juice Pack, you get a 3,000mAh battery. The Juice Pack won’t give you a full charge, but it will provide around a 50% charge for your device.

So, how essential is the Mophie Juice Pack these days? I got one for my iPhone 15 Pro and found out.

A good design, plenty of battery, and more

Christine Romero-Chan / Digital Trends

The Mophie Juice Pack comes as two pieces that slide in and snap together. You slide your iPhone 15 into the bottom half, which is basically two-thirds of the case, and then snap in the top piece, which has the camera cutout.

Inside the Mophie Juice Pack is a USB-C connector that plugs into your iPhone 15 once it’s installed. On the bottom of the case is a USB-C port to charge. The Juice Pack uses passthrough priority charging, so when you plug it in, the iPhone will charge first, then the case will charge.

Since this is a battery case, there’s a slight bump on the back to house the battery, and it does add a slight bit of weight to your phone. But it is relatively slim and offers up to six-foot drop protection.

The case itself is made with up to 50% recycled plastic and has a nice soft-touch matte finish that feels comfortable in the hand. The button covers are nice and tactile, and, yes, there is a cover on the Action button rather than just a cutout.

Four LED status lights and a button are located on the bottom rear of the Juice Pack. The lights indicate the charge status and battery level. One press of the button checks the battery level, and you need to press and hold it for a few seconds to start the charging. This is good because you choose when to use the battery case’s power rather than it starting automatically once it’s installed.


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Mophie Juice Pack for iPhone 15 Pro.

Christine Romero-Chan / Digital Trends

Mophie Juice Pack for iPhone 15 Pro.

Christine Romero-Chan / Digital Trends

I used the Mophie Juice Pack when my iPhone 15 Pro was down to 35% battery. In two hours, it went up to 70% while I was still heavily using the phone. It’s not the fastest charge, nor will it take you from zero to 100%, but it definitely helps to extend your battery life while you’re out and about.

It’s important to note that the Juice Pack does not have MagSafe integration. So if you use some MagSafe accessories, like PopSockets or car mounts, these won’t work if you have the Juice Pack on.

And while I do like the soft touch matte finish, it is prone to getting smudged easily and showing fingerprints. It’s easy enough to wipe off every now and then, but you’ve been warned.

Still a worthy iPhone accessory

Christine Romero-Chan / Digital Trends

The Mophie Juice Pack won’t be my daily case, but it will be handy for when I’m out for most of the day or traveling. It offers solid protection while also having extra battery power if I need it, and that’s a convenient combo.

I don’t think that we’ll be returning to the days when almost everyone on a plane had a Mophie Juice Pack on their phone. That’s because there are so many other alternatives now for mobile power, like battery packs with integrated cables that can fast charge or even MagSafe battery packs.

But the Mophie Juice Pack is a good option if you want some protection and integrated power in one package. Plus, it’s just great to see it return after several years of absence.

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