A small battery that promises a lot of power. Does the myCharge EnergyShot deliver?
Great shape, incredibly durable, fairly light weight and a lot of potential charging power.
Form over function choices cause a lot of the potential power to be lost with no benefit gained.
This might be a good last minute product to pick up at the convenience store in a pinch, this is probably not the battery to purchase as a regular solution.
Where To Get It
As always, our testing was done in two parts: official battery testing and a more practical test. This battery comes in at 2 amps, which means it should be able to charge an equivalent amount of power in other devices.
While using this charger on the road, it did provide enough power to keep my phone charged throughout most of the day, even with a constant barrage of phone calls, emails and texts. However, by the end of a fairly average day, the battery of both the phone and the EnergyShot were depleted, with still a bit of day left. This means that, for a more casual user, this battery should certainly help you through the day, it will not be the solution a convention attendee might need to do business throughout the day.
Nokia Lumia 620
Like with previous portable power solutions, we used a Nokia Lumia 620 running our in-house battery test, with the EnergyShot attached. Standalone, the Lumia 620 lasts 10 hours and 15 minutes from full charge. Using a fully charged phone battery, plus the EnergyShot, the average was 22 hours and 5 minutes. A perfect combination, which would be 3.3 amps, should last almost exactly 26 hours. That is a loss of almost 4 hours of potential power - just over 25 percent of the potential added power. Other batteries we have tested in the past have tended more towards the 6 percent loss range. That means this battery loses 4 times more power than our average external battery. When combined with the fact that it begins with less than double the power of this phone to start with, that is an incredibly disappointing loss.
The battery has no manual shut off, which means the device is constantly looking for something to charge. Of course, this takes energy to accomplish. In addition, there is no button to test the remaining power; instead there is a shake feature, which requires powering a sensor. Also, if this is in a bag, the constant shaking of the battery will constantly be testing the battery's life, which will also limit it. With 2 features added to make the device seem cool, rather than adding value, which consume power, it is no surprise this device loses so much of its potential energy.
Overall, the build quality of this battery is sound. The body is sturdy enough to be bounced around in your backpack or purse without it taking any real damage. The metal body and more matte finish means that it doesn't smudge and doesn't look cheap. Even the cylindrical shape makes it convenient to carry in small pockets. Unfortunately, there are a few design decisions that make this a tough call. There is no power button, which means that the device auto-powers. While it seems like a nice idea at first, it also means the battery is constantly running, even in a very low power mode, depleting the energy reserve. The accelerometer for battery level also means that the full 2 amps is not available for charging. A simple pair of buttons, or button/switch combo, on the bottom of the device could have alleviated this issue.
While it would be difficult to consider the EnergyShot to be "light weight," it is not what I would call "overweight" either. It is slightly heavier than you might expect for its size, the body is constructed out of metal, instead of plastic, making the additional weight acceptable. You would certainly not notice the additional weight in a backpack, laptop bag or purse.
For its size and power rating, it is understandable that this battery only supports a 1 amp USB port. That means that it can charge any phone and some smaller USB-powered tablets. It may not, however, be able to charge more power hungry devices, such as larger tablets; at least not at speeds that would compensate for their power usage. The ability to recharge using micro-USB means that just about any existing charger you have, including your computer, can recharge the battery.