PowerSkin’s Pop’n 2 ($70) is a new battery pack made for the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus. Like the original Pop’n (review) for iPhone 5, Pop’n 2 is an external battery that uses suction cups to attach directly to the back of the iPhone, with a small, flexible micro-USB to Lightning connector supplying the power. Unlike the past iteration, the updated Pop’n 2 offers double the battery power — 4000 mAh — and 2.1A charging speeds, all for $10 less. Pop’n 2 also comes with a micro-USB to USB cable for charging the battery, and a thin plastic shell for the iPhone 6, though the case isn’t necessary to use the battery.
Pop’n 2 measures 4.48” long, 2.3” wide, and 0.39” thick, and weighs in at 4.16 ounces. It uses 32 small suction cups to stick to the back of an unencased iPhone 6 or iPhone 6 Plus, though the battery will stick to some cases, as well. Though it seems like an awkward design, with the battery attached to the bottom of a phone and sticking to the back of the device, it’s not quite as troublesome as it appears. More bulk is added, but with the iPhone 6, your hand should fit around the battery comfortably, allowing for use of the phone during charging — it’s slightly more awkward on the iPhone 6 Plus due to the larger phone’s size. The battery is definitely warm while charging, but it wasn’t too hot to touch. Once again, bear in mind that shoving an extra battery into your pocket with an iPhone 6 Plus may be too much for the pocket to handle at once. We think Pop’n 2 is best used with an iPhone that’s not being pocketed.
What impresses most about Pop’n 2 is the battery’s quick iPhone charging time. Pop’n 2 fully charged an iPhone 6 in 2 hours and 4 minutes — 20 minutes faster than the charger that comes packed with the device. The battery also exceeded its claim of a 150 percent charge for an iPhone 6, giving us 169 percent. For the iPhone 6 Plus, Pop’n 2 fell just short of its full charge claim, giving us a 99 percent charge in a very fast 2 hours and 12 minutes, also a notable step up from the official Apple charger. Reasons for the faster speeds are unclear, but perhaps Apple is limiting its own chargers due to safety concerns.
While it’s not the most elegant solution, Pop’n 2 works, and it recharges both the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus at very fast speeds. PowerSkin beefed up the power and lowered the price from the first Pop’n, which is obviously welcomed. However, batteries have evolved over the past year—and iPhones now have greater power demands, as well—so while the higher capacity and lower pricing are welcome, they’re necessary to keep Pop’n 2 competitive. It still feels a bit like an in-between sort of solution, though, and considering the extra bulk, we think it’s a better option for iPhone 6 users than iPhone 6 Plus users. Even considering the somewhat strange design, Pop’n 2 is a good battery at a decent price, and it earns our general recommendation.
Company and Price
Model: Pop’n 2
Compatible: iPhone 6/iPhone 6 Plus