Anker claims that the PowerCore+26800 with Quick Charge 3.0 is the smallest power bank on the market that has a capacity of 26800mAh, and I'd have to agree.
This charger isn't meant to be stuffed into your jeans pocket while you are on the go. Rather, it is more ideal for the user who wants a power bank that they can stick in their bag and be capable of geting lots of charge time, before having to worry about charging the powerbank itself.
The case of the PowerCore+ is made of 1mm thick aluminum that has smooth machined edges and an anodized black surface that does a remarkable job in resisting fingerprints. Although the case is aluminum, the charge status button is most certainly plastic. However, given that the button is pretty much flush with the case, I don't see this as being easily damaged by a drop.
The USB ports themselves have a nice firm feel when plugging in a USB cable. In other words, your cable won't come unplugged unless you want it to.
The power bank does come with a nice mesh carrying case that does add a little bit of padding to help protect the power bank. The case is a nice addition, but I feel that it could be made better. To me the string pull feels just a little bit on the thin side relative to the size of the device itself.
So just how well does this charger perform? In terms of speed of charging your devices, you get the fastest charge possible for your device. Unlike other power banks I have used in the past that claim to be able to put out 2.4 amps, only to fall short, this one holds strong. Not only that but this one can put out 3 amps for three devices simultaneously. In my testing charging a drained iPad as well as an iPhone 7 simultaneously showed no significant voltage drop when using a USB voltmeter. In terms of the actual number of charges that I get for my iPhone 7, I get right around 10 full charges like anker advertises on their amazon page.
So how long does it take to charge this massive power bank? Using a standard 2 amp iPad charger I was able to fully charge my unit in about 14.5 hours. Although this was using a USB current meter that keeps track of the amount of time a device is drawing power, it has a tendency to slow the charging process of higher current devices.
Speaking with anker on the phone I was told the following for charge times of the PowerCore+:
- Using 2 amp charger: 13-15 hours.
- Using a QC 3.0 charger: 8-10 hours.
Charge status indicator
The charge status indicator has 10 white LEDs. Each individual LED indicates 10% of a full charge. 5 LEDs means 50% charge remaining. You get the point...
- When the PowerCore+ is being charged the number of solidly lit LEDs represent how much charge you have right now. The remaining LEDs light in sequence to show that the unit is charging. When fully charged all of the LEDs will turn off.
- When charging a device using the PowerCore+ the LEDs will turn on and remain lit to show how much charge is remaining.
- When you aren't charging anything with the PowerCore+, a press of the charge indicator will turn on the charge status LEDs for several seconds to give you an idea of what you have available.
Issues I've had
I have only experienced one minor bug with my PowerCore+, and was informed by support that it is not a known issue, and was quickly offered the option of exchanging my PowerCore+.
The issue that I have experienced occurs only under certain circumstances when connecting an iPad or an iPhone to the PowerCore. This happens regardless of weather I'm using a lightning or 30 pin cable, and it doesn't seem to matter if I'm using an apple or anker cable either. Basically if you first plug the cable into the iPhone or iPad then the PowerCore, the charge status lights come on, but the iOS device doesn't show that it is being charged. Strangely enough this only happens when you plug the cable into the power bank at a somewhat slow speed, and this is easy enough to do considering the USB ports are firm. Unplugging and then plugging the cable into the iPhone or iPad solves this with no problems.
How anker handles warranty exchanges
When calling anker I found the hold time to be extremely short, well under a minute. I described the issue and gave my order number and they were happy to offer an exchange. The process of exchanging an anker product is simple. They email you a postage paid label for you to use. (yay for not having to pay shipping!) You package your product and once they see movement on the tracking number they send out the replacement.
I chose to wait to see if fully draining my unit and recharging it fixes my issue but if it doesn't I will be sure to call back to start the exchange process. The woman on the phone made a note on either my serial or the order number regarding what I was experiencing, so next time I call I just have to give them the S/N and the order number to get the exchange started. They make it so painless it would be stupid for me not to.
I tried to cover all of the bases in this review, but I would appreciate your feedback of how I did. What did I do well, did I miss anything, and is there anything specific you want to know that I left out? Or if you think I did an overall good job liking my post is enough feedback for me.
I just wanted to add a little update. Today I went to try charging my FitBit Charge 2. I plugged the charging adapter into the PowerCore+, then put the Charge 2 in its charging adapter. Nothing happened. However, when I pressed the charge status button on the power bank, the fitbit started charging no problem.
Anyone else having any similar issues?
Fully draining the power bank and recharging it did not solve the issue with iOS devices not always charging. I will be calling Anker on Monday to get a replacement unit. I will update you with info regarding my RMA as it happens.
Just had the chance to call Anker to request the warranty replacement. It was even easier than I had stated in my original review. After giving a short description of my issue and the amazon order they asked if my address was correct, I was informed that a replacement would arrive in three to five business days! Sounds like I just ship the old one back in the box that they send the replacement in. That's what I call awesome warranty service! Thanks Anker!