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Jackery Giant aims to keep your devices going

My first impression when hearing about this rechargeable battery pack for iPad, iPhone, and iPod touch was "wasn't Jackery Giant something about a beanstalk?" My second impression, upon reading about the capacity of the Giant, was that it was definitely something worth looking at. Read on for a TUAW review and giveaway of the Jackery Giant (US$59.95) battery pack.

Design

There's not much you can do with a battery pack. They all seem to be flat rectangular blocks varying in size and capacity, with the only major change being how the manufacturer packages the device. In this case, Jackery wraps the batteries and electronics in an anodized silver or orange aluminum case that looks good and stands out from the crowd.

The capacity of the Giant is pretty darned big, hence the name. It has a 10400 mAh capacity, enough to charge your iPhone 5 seven times and still have a little left over to run the built-in LED flashlight. That's also about a quarter of a full charge on a fourth-generation iPad, adding over two hours of life to that device. An iPad mini would run for over six more hours when connected to a Giant.

The Giant has two USB ports to plug your charging cables into. One is rated at 1A and is perfect for the iPhone or iPod touch, the other is a 2.1A port for topping off your iPad or iPad mini. For charging the Giant, Jackery includes a ribbon-type USB to micro-USB cable that takes up very little space.

Jackery Giant aims to keep your devices going

Weight-wise, the Giant tips the scales at 10.4 ounces. It easily fits in the back pocket of your jeans with outside dimensions of 4.3" long, 3.1" wide and 0.8" high. It's not too large, so if your travel requirements

On one of the flat sides of the Jackery Giant are three elongated blue LEDs that indicate the charge level of the battery pack. Pressing the power button (located on one of the curved sides) lights up the LEDs for about six seconds. Pressing the power button twice turns on an LED flashlight that will run for up to 700 hours on one charge, pressing it again twice turns off the flashlight.

Functionality

After draining the battery pack by charging an iPad mini with it, it took approximately 10 hours to recharge the Giant. Considering the capacity, that's fairly fast, but you'll want to make sure that you plug it in for a charge the night before you think you'll need the Giant.

The 2.1A output of one port worked perfectly with both an iPad mini and regular-sized iPad. For anyone going on a marathon airline flight who wants to have enough juice to keep things running for most of the flight, the Giant should do the job.

There's not much more to say; the Giant performs admirably and looks good. The price of the Giant is almost double what an off-brand battery pack with similar capacity would cost on NewEgg, but given the choice I'd recommend one of the name brand packs like the Giant or the Satechi 10000 mAh Portable Energy Station.

Conclusion

I was impressed by the build quality of the Jackery Giant and the overall abilities of the pack. At $60, it's reasonably priced although cheaper battery packs are available.

Pros

  • Anodized aluminum case looks good, should be durable
  • Large capacity at a fairly reasonable price
  • Has both 1A and 2.1A USB ports for charging both iPhone/iPod touch and iPad/iPad mini
  • Built-in flashlight is handy when searching through luggage or when in a hotel room at night

Cons

  • None to speak of

Who is it for?

  • The seasoned traveler who wants enough battery capacity to charge an iPhone 5 seven times or top off an iPad.

Giveaway

Someone reading this post will receive a brand new Jackery Giant battery pack, just in time for watching movies on your iPad mini from your tent while you're camping this summer. Here are the rules for the giveaway:

  • Open to legal US residents of the 50 United States, the District of Columbia and Canada (excluding Quebec) who are 18 and older.
  • To enter, fill out the form below completely and click or tap the Submit button.
  • The entry must be made before April 1, 2013 11:59PM Eastern Daylight Time.
  • You may enter only once.
  • One winner will be selected and will receive a Jackery Giant rechargeable battery pack valued at US$59.95.
  • Click Here for complete Official Rules.