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Published on December 24th, 2012 | by Greg

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uNu ECOPAK: The First Battery Pack For The iPhone 5

It’s Christmas Eve! We’ve been doing some last minute shopping, and one of the items at the top of many people’s list is a solution to help extend the battery life of the iPhone 5. Sadly, there aren’t many options out there- in fact, we’ve got a review of the first one available today. We’ve seen so many iPhone accessories this past year, from docks and speakers and more exotic items like a laser measuring product that snaps on, and a multi-LED light for photography. And be sure to check out our recent case round-up of female-friendly, fashion-forward products for the iPhone 4/4s.

The uNu ECCOPAK is a combination of two pieces- a plastic snap-on case, and a fairly slim battery pack. On their own, neither would be particularly significant, but as these are about the only solution currently available for the iPhone 5, it’s definitely worth taking a look.

The plastic cases are available in a wide range of colors- pink, black, yellow, blue, white, red, and more. They’re extremely basic, offering little protection beyond making the rear and sides of the phone a bit more scratch resistant. Instead, the case serves largely as a connector for the battery, with three holes cut out on the rear, allowing you to slide and snap the battery extender.

The lithium polymer battery pack is perfectly adequate- it will more than double your iPhone’s life, thanks to the 2500mAh capacity. Charging is handled via a micro-USB connector, and there are a few small LEDs on the bottom of the battery pack that indicate the current charge level. It’s perfectly-sized to the iPhone, fairly lightweight, and feels pretty good- but will double the thickness of your device! Also, it’s important to note that it you’ll also need to find another Lightning cable or use your own- in other words, there’s no direct connection to the phone included, so it might be more accurate to claim that it is an ‘iPhone 5-sized battery pack’ rather than a complete solution. Carrying around the lengthy charging cable is a pain, to be sure, and it can be used with other battery packs with a USB port with no issues anyway.

We recommend waiting a bit longer for a better solution, or taking other steps to preserve your battery life (lowering the brightness, disabling location services, and similar steps can help a lot). But if you’re in need of a battery package that works fairly well, and don’t have another case you’re attached to and don’t mind limited protection, then the uNu ECOPAK is decent. Available now, online primarily, for around $80.

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About the Author

Greg dreamed up the idea for the Truly Network while living in Hawaii, which began with a single site called TrulyObscure. In 2010, when advertisers and readers were requesting coverage beyond the scope of that site, TrulyNet was launched, reaching a broader audience over a variety of niche sites. Formerly the head technology correspondent for the Des Moines Register at age 16, he has since lived and worked in five states and two countries, helping a list of organizations and companies that includes the United States Census Bureau, TripAdvisor, Events Photo Group, Berlitz, and Computer Geeks. He also served as the Content Strategy Manager for HearPlanet, a multi-platform app that has reached over a million users and has been featured in the New York Times, Hemispheres Magazine, National Geographic Adventure, Fox Business News, PC Magazine, and even Apple’s own iPhone ads. Greg has written as a restaurant critic and feature journalist for a number of national and international publications, including City Weekend Magazine, Red Egg Magazine, the Newton Daily News, Capital Change Magazine, and an arm of China Daily, Beijing Weekend. In addition, he has served as a consulting editor for the Foreign Language Press of Beijing, as well as a writer and editor for the George Washington University Hatchet, the school newspaper of his alma mater. Originally from Iowa, Greg is currently living in the West Village of Manhattan.



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