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The Best Portable Chargers you can get in 2021

Is your phone constantly running out of battery while you’re out and about? Then you need a portable charger. We’ve put together the best portable chargers on the market in 2021, so you can find the best one for you. 

Last updated: 26th Jan 2021 at 11:07am

What is a portable charger?

A portable charger, sometimes referred to as a power bank, power pack, or external battery, is a gadget that can be used to recharge your mobile phone, laptop or tablet while you’re travelling or nowhere near a plug socket. 

If your smartphone doesn’t have a particularly good battery life, it’s more likely to die as you’re out and about shopping, commuting, and working. Though there are ways of making your battery last longer, a portable charger is the most convenient method of recharging your device whilst away from home. 

If you travel a lot, then a portable charger is a necessity to make your journeys stress-free. 

How does it work?

A portable charger is very easy to use. 

Simply charge your portable charger like you would a phone, by plugging it into the mains, before you leave to go anywhere. 

Once your power pack is fully charged enough, you can pop it in your bag and take it with you. The charger stores that energy inside until you need to use it. Most will use a USB cable to connect to your phone, but you can find some that work wirelessly. With the release of Apple MagSafe, you can expect to see more and more wireless power banks on the market. 

Finding the right portable charger for your phone

You need to pick the right portable charger for your smartphone’s battery. You should always pick a charger with a larger mAh (milliamp hour; how battery life is measured) than your phone to ensure it can fully charge the device. For example, if your phone has a 2,000mAh battery, your portable charger should be at least 2,500mAh to cover one and a half charges. For more charges, purchase a portable battery with a higher mAh. 

Pros and cons of portable chargers

Pros

Portable - perfect for carrying with you on long journeys

Convenient - never worry about trying to find a socket or electricity between pit-stops or in unfamiliar areas

Customisable - you can buy one fully suited to your phone’s battery life, and how long you’ll need to charge for, rather than making do with just one mAh capacity

Long-lasting and sustainable - portable chargers last four to five years before either needing to be replaced, or losing some charging capacity 

Cons

Slow to charge themselves - most portable chargers take anywhere between one to four hours, on average, to fully charge, though others can take half a day

Prone to overheating if you leave them charging for longer than necessary 

Can be expensive to buy, though Asda Mobile has a range of affordable power banks available online

If you use your car’s charger, or your phone has a good battery life, then a portable charger probably isn’t necessary for you. But if you travel a lot, and don’t always have access to a plug socket, then this handy gadget could be a lifesaver. 

The best portable chargers

One of the easiest ways to shop for the right portable charger is by battery capacity (e.g. how much mAh they offer) versus how much you know you’ll need. If you want a large battery capacity to sustain you for multiple days, then choosing a charger with more than 10,000mAh is a good idea.

Explore our list of large, medium, and small battery capacity chargers to find the most suitable one for your needs. 

Large capacity

Krisdonia 50000mAh Laptop Power Bank

Capacity: 50,000mAh

This portable charger is capable of storing a whopping 50,000mAh of charge in it, best for people going on extended trips without electricity. It is capable of charging laptops, as well as smartphones and tablets, so is suitable for all of your electronic devices. It can charge the most recent iPhones to full capacity between ten and fifteen times. 

It has four separate plug options to accommodate all devices, including a DC port, USB-A ports, and a USB-C port. Due to the amount of power available within it, this is a fairly large power bank, so isn’t suitable for carrying in a small bag or your pocket. Weighing 1.2kg, it’s heavier than most, but is perfect for people who need all the juice. 

Prepare to pay over £100 for this power pack, as it has one of the largest capacities on the market. 

Large capacity - 50,000mAh

Ideal for long getaways

Multiple plug options to suit all devices

Not the easiest to transport due to size

Expensive

iMuto 30000mAh

Capacity: 30,000mAh

The iMuto has three USB charging ports, one of which supports Quick Charge, and the 30,000mAh power pack is capable of giving many modern smartphones over five full charges. Mini tablets can also be charged back to full two to three times. 

It is a small pack for its capacity, measuring 5.1 x 3.1 x 1.2 inches, but still heavy at 1.1 pounds. Despite the weight, this portable charger is a good choice for those going on a longer trip, as between five and ten smartphone charges (depending on battery size) is plenty power. 

Expect to pay an average price of £40 for this charger. 

Three ports for charging multiple devices

Small size charger

Large enough battery capacity to support multiple recharges over several days (or one to two weeks, depending on phone usage)

Heavy despite its size

Aukey Power Bank 30000mAh

Capacity: 30,000mAh

This portable charger carries enough power to charge your smartphone and other devices multiple times. You have the option of using one of the two regular USB ports or a USB-C port. One of the USB ports features Qualcomm Quick Charge 3.0 support to charge your device even faster, and the USB-C port can be used to recharge the power pack itself. 

You can combine the micro USB input with the USB-C port to charge the battery even faster, making this power pack both affordable and high performing. 

Big 30,000mAh capacity

Charging ports are super handy, charging both devices and the battery itself

Decent price for offerings: £30 - £50

Thick (150 x 84 x 28mm), so might be difficult to fit in some bags

Medium capacity

EC Technology 22,400mAh Power Bank

Capacity: 22,400mAh

To give you an indicator of the sort of power this EC Technology bank holds, it can fully charge a Samsung Galaxy S8 just over four times. It has three USB ports and one micro-USB port for charging up the device itself. 

To combat risks, it comes with its own overheating and short circuit protection, so that the five and a half hour charging time does not become a worry for the user. It also complies with the TSA limit of 100Wh, making it safe to take on planes.

For £20 to £30, it’s a steal. 

Four ports

Good price

Protects itself against overheating 

Long charging time 

Belkin Pocket Power Bank 15K Fast Portable Charger

Capacity: 15,000mAh

This £40 power pack comes from the well-known and reliable brand, Belkin. Coming in four colours (black, pink, rose gold, silver), this portable battery is small and lightweight, perfect for transporting wherever you go. It supports Fast Charging, and has two USB-A ports and one micro-USB port. 

This Belkin charger includes sensors to monitor its own heat levels, as well as the voltage and circuitry to ensure it won’t damage itself or your smartphone. It can apparently charge an iPhone 7 up to three times on a single charge, good for a weekend trip away or even heavier use for a day.

Small and lightweight, perfect for taking with you in a small bag

Average price of £40 from a well-known brand

Supports Fast Charging to get you back up and running in no time

Not suitable for journeys exceeding three days

Anker PowerCore 10000mAh Power Bank

Capacity: 10,000mAh

This portable charger comes from the famous brand, Anker, who many rely on for their electronics. It is one of the smallest and lightest 10,000mAh chargers on the market (9.2 x 6 x 2.2cm), making it suitable for travelling in a small bag. It will provide an iPhone 8 with three and a half charges, or a Samsung Galaxy S8 with two and a half charges. 

The charger is in-built with Anker’s own PowerIQ and VoltageBoost technology for quick charging. There is a micro-USB cable port and a USB-C port for an iPhone’s Lightning cable. 

At just £23, it’s a brilliant bargain from a reputable brand. 

Small and lightweight (180g)

Affordable price for its longevity and reputation

Quick charging

Will only last a day or two recharging larger battery phones

Small capacity

AnkerPowerCore 5000 Portable Charger

Capacity: 5,000mAh

This small, cylindrical portable charger is another staple from Anker. With half the amount of power of its bigger brother, it can still fully recharge an iPhone X and Samsung Galaxy S9 once. Due to using Anker’s own PowerIQ technology, it can charge smartphones and tablets faster than some of its competitors. It has a single USB port for charging, so can support most iPhones and Android models. 

Coming in black, blue or red, it’s just 10cm tall and 3cm wide, which could fit within a backpack or handbag quite easily. 

Only £20 

Small and lightweight

Anker’s own technology supports quicker charging

Only supports a single charge on most modern smartphones

Energizer Max 3000mAh Polymer Portable Power Bank

Capacity: 3,000mAh

For a nice day trip away, this 3,000mAh Energizer Max portable charger is a good option to recharge or partly charge your devices. It comes with a USB-A to micro-B cable and a USB output, which you can use with your own cables to charge pretty much any smartphone.

The battery itself only takes two hours to charge, ready for your day trip. The slim and compact design is perfect for portability, thin enough to fit inside your pocket. 

Cheap - £10

Claims to support all smartphones

Very thin and compact

3,000mAh is only enough to partly charge or fully charge once (most modern smartphones)

Jackery Air 6

Capacity: 3,000mAh

Marketed as the thinnest portable charger in the world, this Jackery power pack is designed with Apple products in mind, adding one full charge to most iPhones and an additional ten hours of talk time. It comes with a Lightning Cable to charge your iPhone or iPad, and a 1A output. 

Measuring just 4.6 x 0.3 x 2.4 inches and weighing 3.3 ounces, you’ll barely feel this little charger. It’s small enough to slip into your pocket without any struggle. 

If you’re looking for a thin, lightweight charger for just a day out, then the Jackery is a good choice for just £10.

Cheap - £10

Very thin and compact

3,000mAh is only enough to partly charge or fully charge once (most modern smartphones)

Only supports Apple devices, sorry Android fans

Check your smartphone’s battery, review how long you’ll be without electricity, and compare our small, medium and large power capacities above to find the best portable charger for your lifestyle. 

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