Review: Digital Treasures Props Power Case for iPad 2, iPad (3rd/4th-Gen)
We don't see nearly as many iPad battery cases as we do for the iPhone, so Digital Treasures Props Power Case ($120) is somewhat noteworthy. We received the 12000mAh model for review; there's also an 8000mAh version. The folio-style case itself is nothing unique, as it's a style we've seen many times before but for those who need to juice up their tablet on the go, it might be the right combination of protection and power. Digital Treasures includes a USB cable for charging the case, and an adapter for power output, but you need to provide your own Lightning or Dock Connector cable.
The faux leather folio is quite thick, although we’ve seen similar cases without batteries that are about the same size. A magnetic tab along the open edge keeps it shut when you’re not using the tablet. Inside, an X-shaped rubber frame is used to hold the iPad in place. This means the corners are protected, but all four edges are mostly exposed. Even though it allows for full button and port access, it’s a less than ideal design. We’d much rather have proper coverage. The “Props” in the name refers to the ability to stand your iPad up in landscape orientation. Rubber lining the inside of the front cover allows for a wide range of angles, depending on how you’d like it positioned.
Props Power Case’s battery is housed inside the front cover; it’s a little over a quarter inch thick. Underneath the Lightning or Dock Connector port, along the bottom edge, you’ll find a power input port, battery indicator lights, a power button, and Micro-USB for output. Because it only supports 1A input, charging the case takes a significantly long time, whether you’re doing so off of your computer or a self-provided wall charger. It claims to put out 2A, but our tests indicated otherwise.
In six hours and 45 minutes, Props Power Case was able to deliver a 65% charge to a fourth-generation iPad. This is right in line with what we’d expect based on past batteries, but just a little short of the 70% claim on the package. During the charging process, the blue battery indicator lights stay on, which may be a small issue for those juicing up in a dark room. Otherwise, it worked just as expected.
For $40 less than the 12000mAh Props Power Case, one can pick up a standalone battery solution such as uNu’s Enerpak Vault, and get a comparable, if not better, charge. With those options, the case is then up to you, but at least you can choose something less bulky and more protective. But if the combined functionality is what you’re looking for, this case gets it done. The solution earns a limited recommendation. It’s not the best way to accomplish the task, but it’s a way, and it works.