Published on December 24th, 2012 | by Greg0
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.