Sunday, December 1, 2013

Geek On The Go: Mophie Powerstation Duo Power Block

I'm an expensive combination: a relentless optimizer and a gadget nut. If something sticks for more than a few months, then it's likely to be a decent fit for my lifestyle. The idea behind the "Geek On The Go" blog posts is to share the best equipment and habits I've found for travel as a technophile, and perhaps save the dear reader some expense.

In the bay area, we live by the availability of three things: coffee, internet access and power. Starbucks of course completes the trifecta, but there's plenty of times you can't find one or the other. In this post, I will share the reason I've stopped worrying about power.

The Mophie Powerstation Duo is a power block that's worth spending the money on. You charge it up via USB, and then it's able to charge up to two other USB-connected devices. It has enough power in it to manage both a smartphone and a tablet. If you have an HP Chromebook 11, it can manage charging that too.

My routine for the Mophie block is simple: ensure it's fully charged before a journey, and then just plug it in to charge overnight. The output from a laptop's USB is usually enough to return the Powerstation to full before the next day starts, given my typical usage.

The 6000mAh capacity means I've never managed to run the Powerstation to empty yet. It holds its charge well enough that it sits permanently in my bag, and is enough to charge my phone, even when I've not thought ahead to top up the Powerstation's juice. Two charging ports means you can also offer help to a friend in need.

The footprint of the Powerstation block is about the same as a smartphone. If you are in a crunch situation, it's possible to hold both the block and the phone together in one hand so you can use your phone while it's charging.

Finally, and important to me at least, the Powerstation Duo looks good. The external LEDs make it easy to see when it's charged, and the finish is visually appealing.

Pick up one of these and you'll never buy a lame powerpack in an airport store again.