The Cellink I is the emergency battery boost your iPhone might need

By , Aug 16, 2012

There are those days when your on-board iPhone battery cannot handle the stress of a working day. Typically, I get around 4.5 hours of usage between charges, which on a busy news day, leaves me bumming a power cord around the office. Mobile battery backups and chargers are a great way to extend battery life if your cubical neighbor forgot to bring in the cable you always borrow. Cellink I by Cell Drive is a pocket sized – let’s call it a snack portion – of battery boost to keep you reading, tweeting, posting, or blogging until you get home…

Design

Almost 3″ tip-to-tip, the Cellink I is just over half the length of the iPhone 4 and slightly wider than the aging 30 pin connector. The USB and 30 pin connector are fixed, without the ability to retract, flip or bend them into the main housing. To prevent the tips from snagging items in your pocket, a simple cover that slides over the entire unit is provided. Overall, it is a very simplistic design, which is appropriate, but I would really like to have a small key ring somewhere to clip this into a book bag.

Function

Well, as all chargers do, the Cellink I charges your iPhone or iPod. After a couple runs, I found the 600 mAh tends to recharge around 20% of my iPhone 4 (CDMA) in approximately 20-25 minutes. While recharging, I left my iPhone on, but did not use it. I found it interesting neither of the three indicator lights emitted while the unit was charging the phone, but the iDevice has an on-screen way of alerting the user. The LEDs only denote when the device battery is charging, has a full-charge, or during data transfer.

To charge the unit, plug it into any USB port and if the port happens to be on a computer, the Cellink I is capable of synching your iDevice too. The catch? If you have vertical USB drives on your laptop, this will not be the preferred charging method, as the Cellink I may be wider than your laptop is thick, requiring you to dangle the Cellink I over the table edge to accommodate. However, assuming we are all Mac users, there is no need to fret. Silly PC’s.

Finally, the Cellink I doubles as a MicroSD card reader, which for some may be the awesome surprise at the bottom of a cereal box, but for me, seemed like a useless feature. Not just useless because the Cellink I is primarily designed to be a charger, but useless because I cannot remember the last time I used a card reader to accomplish anything.

Conclusion

The Cellink I – Mobile Charger and Card Reader for iPhone is a quick fix for a draining battery, but there is a steep $49.95 price tag for a small charge. With a small on-board emergency power supply, the 600 mAh will get you a decent amount of talk, text, or tweet time before you make it to your final destination. I would not use it as a primary way to charge my phone or rely on it for a long travel trip, but it is a great small companion for everyday use and I appreciate our friends over at Cell Drive for sending us a review unit.

Pros:

  •  Small and portable
  • Regain ~20% battery life
  • Built in card reader(?)
  • Syncs via USB

Cons:

  • Price
  • Small charge capacity

What do you guys think about the Cellink I? Would you rather use a back up charging stick, like Cellink I, or a backup battery case?

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  • Kok Hean

    In that case, you might as well get a mophie juice pack reserve® with 700 mAh for a cheaper price ($34.95).

    • http://twitter.com/Zach_Krase Zach Krase

      that’s what I was going to say!

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=608118567 Paul Hinks

    just buy a solar powered charger charge it up anywhere even behind the window of it will still charge up then u dont have to carry any other wires mine dose all the latest phones from 1 wire with 4 leads off it 1 micro usb 1 mini usb nokia plug and iphone/ipad/ipod basically most apple products no need to use usb to charge it up either which is a bonus i use mine all the time when im out and about #

    • notewar

      Hey Paul im just wondering about the solar power case, leaving your phone exposed to the sun while charging it -does that make your phone very hot?

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=680891562 Al Iverson

        Also, how does a solar panel work for me when I’m trapped at the airport on a rainy day with a flat battery? I have a Brookstone 1200 mAh battery that looks very similar to this, it brings the iPhone 4 up to about 50% charged and I think it cost $70. Comes in very handy, specifically for long travel days.

  • Its Mean

    Whats the differnce between this and just using a standard apple USB cable?

  • MadAndronicus

    No need to buy iPhone accessories with the redesigned connector around the corner.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=539480065 Leslie Kwan

    I’ve been using one that I bought on eBay for $5 and it works fine.

  • http://www.facebook.com/derfaust.mobile Der Faust

    just score a 1500mAh-1800mAh battery case off of ebay or amazon :)…… yes….it makes the phone bigger, but you get more juice and protection…..win-win :)

  • notewar

    I want some recommendation here. At the moment im using Morphie Juice Pack Plus but as much as i love it i couldnt stand the ridiculous recharge time. The morphie usually took 2-3 hours for full recharge. What battery case are you guys using right now and are there any case out there doesnt that took 2-3 hrs for recharge?

    • http://twitter.com/ArniePosadas Arnie Posadas

      I currently use uNu DX Plus Protection Batter Case it has 2400mAh :D

      • notewar

        How long does it take u to recharge?

      • http://twitter.com/ArniePosadas Arnie Posadas

        I dont really check XD but it last me the whooooooole day of usage got it for $40

  • http://twitter.com/digitalfeind Dani Hayes

    “Pro: regain %20 battery, Cons: small charge capacity” and for $50 it is still useless.

  • http://twitter.com/martinbusek Martin Busek

    I have the same thing for 3 years already :) And it also have flash with 2GB memory