Review: Foxnovo Power Bank portable charger

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Worthwhile investment

This portable battery pack is a bit heavier and thicker than most but it also packs more charging capacity and it recharges your mobile devices quickly. For $29 it's a gadget that will definitely come in handy.

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In a perfect world our mobile devices would always be charged and we wouldn’t have to worry about running out of power at the least opportune moment possible. It’s not a perfect world. Although smartphone and tablet makers have made significant strides with battery life, the need to recharge remains a fact of life. We took a look at one portable charger you can use to stay powered up on the go—the Foxnovo Power Bank portable charger.

Form

The size and shape of the Foxnovo Power Bank are fairly standard at this point. There are a variety of sizes and shapes for portable charging devices, but the slim rectangle roughly the size of a smartphone is a very common approach.

The Foxnovo Power Bank is 10400mAh battery housed in a 4.72 by 2.55 inch rectangle about seven tenths of an inch thick. It weighs in at just over half a pound—8.48 ounces to be precise.

As you can see in the image above it has a polished aluminum case. On one end there is a micro USB port used to recharge the Power Bank itself, and a power button used to turn it on or to check the current charge status of the internal battery. There are also two USB ports that can be used to recharge mobile devices. One is 5v and 2.1amp and the other is 5v and 1.0amp.

Function

There isn’t a lot to say about the function of such a device. It is essentially just a spare battery you carry around that enables you to charge other devices. According to the “user manual”—a small tri-fold sheet of paper that comes in the box—it takes 8 to 10 hours to fully charge the Foxnovo Power Bank itself.

There are four LEDs above the power button to indicate the amount of power stored in the device. You can tap the power button and see how many light up. Four LEDs indicates 75 to 100 percent capacity, three equals 50 to 75 percent, two means 25 to 50 percent, and one LED means less than 25 percent capacity.

The device comes with a 4-in-1 charging cable. One end plugs into the USB port on the Power Bank and the other end has connections for Apple Lighting, Apple 30-pin, micro USB, and micro USB 3—the faster charging micro USB used in newer Samsung mobile devices.

My Experience

10400mAh is a very large capacity for such a small device. Similar portable chargers I’ve used typically have 3000mAh or 6000mAh batteries. It takes longer to fully charge the Foxnovo Power Bank but once it is charged it should have enough juice to recharge a number of devices, or repeatedly recharge a smartphone or tablet over the course of a day or days.

This unit is both thicker and heavier than other portable battery packs I’ve used. That is a tradeoff that is a direct reflection of the larger battery capacity. Basically, I can carry a thinner, lighter portable battery pack and have less recharging capacity or I can sacrifice a little weight and size to carry the larger battery.

One thing I noticed when using the Foxnovo Power Bank to recharge my devices is that it’s fast. I plugged in an iPhone 5s that was drained to 82 percent and it was fully charged back to 100 percent in about 10 minutes.

The Verdict

This unit is definitely worth the price—at least the actual price you pay on Amazon.com. It is listed at $60 retail, which is sort of high, but the actual price on Amazon is only $29, which is a bargain. It’s a bit thick to carry in the back pocket of your jeans, but you can carry it comfortably in the inside pocket of a sport coat. If you’re going on a trip the extra half-pound in your bag will be worth it when your smartphone or tablet begins to die right when you need it most.

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About Author

I have a passion for technology and gadgets--with a focus on Microsoft and security--and a desire to help others understand how technology can affect or improve their lives. I also love spending time with my wife, 7 kids, 3 dogs, 4 cats, 3 rabbits, 2 ferrets, pot-bellied pig and sulcata tortoise, and I like to think I enjoy reading and golf even though I never find time for either. You can contact me directly at tony@xpective.net. For more from me, you can follow me on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn.

60 Comments

  1. Something I never got around to buying, although I’ve been stuck with a dead battery from time to time.

  2. I’ve bought several portable chargers and all of them have too little power. With 10400mAh this may be the ultimate answer!

  3. Michael Johnson on

    I can never have too many batteries. I have one other large 10K mAh battery that is starting to die that is larger than this one. I like this one’s size and features. Huzzah!

  4. I_know_a_thing_or_two on

    I think the design of a device like the RAVPower® Savior Multi-functional External Battery Pack is even better. It has pop-out prongs for plugging the device into an outlet to charge, and it includes a built-in, permanently attached micro-USB plug or Lightning adapter and a 1A full-size USB port for other devices. IOW, if you’re into Apple products, you get one with the Lightning adapter and you can charge any Apple device without needing a cable. Or, if you’re into non-Apple products, you get one with the micro-USB plug and, again, you’re all set without needing a cable. The Foxnovo requires a USB cable to charge itself, which takes longer since it isn’t getting power from an AC outlet, and you need a cable to charge your device. The upside to the Foxnovo is that it has a 2.1A USB port, which means it can charge either kind of device, provided you remember the cable. (The Foxnovo is about 2/3 the volume of the RAVPower, too.)

  5. I’ve been looking for a phone charger to take to the cabin. This one would keep me going for a long weekend.

  6. Eric Baatz on

    The versatility and price sound right and the weight and looks are okay for the capacity. The only faults I see are that the cable isn’t attached to the unit, so it is subject to being someplace else (lost?) when I need it and that the charging is a bit indirect, that is, it needs a plug to micro USB path that isn’t supplied. Although I’m sure that I have one, it probably doesn’t recharge the unit as fast as it could be recharged if it could be plugged directly into a wall plug.

  7. Christopher Wunker on

    I am thinking of getting a battery like this for my Izon wifi video monitor to extend its usage time.

  8. I’m often out-and-about with my kids and our devices- this would have been great at the science museum when my phone battery was almost gone so I had to limit my photography!

  9. Even if it is a little larger then others it would be easy to carry in my laptop bag and be available to charge my iPhone when needed.

  10. Michael Slansky on

    Would be great to have this as insurance to never run out of power when you can least afford to.

  11. I like the idea of having a portable charging device for those moments when you desperately need your device to be powered. It doesn’t appear, however, to have an ac adapter, which might make the convenience factor a bit inconvenient when the unit needs to be charged. I remember being on a long flight to Memphis from the west coast and my tablet died. Everyone around me was happily watching movies, typing away on their devices, and I was dead in the water. I had neglected to bring anything to read with me, so I was pretty bored! This device would ensure I was always powered.

  12. Michael L Jones on

    Good informative review! I think this would be ideal to keep in my car, where the phone always seems to die!! Thanks

  13. I just bought a similar product with slightly larger capacity and would really like to compare the form factors.

  14. Robert Bauer on

    With the larger power reserve, this would be great during a power outage or for “planned outages”, such as a camping trip.

  15. Would come in perfect when I’m out in a nearby state forest away from an AC power source. Usually gone for a few days and often find my phone dying on me.

  16. Kathy Thomas on

    My cig lighter phone charger seems to only provide a trickle charge. These specs look good and I would love to have one.

  17. I love how big its capacity is, so that you don’t need to recharge it everytime, but just after 3-4 smartphone cherges…and I love that it’s got 2 usb ports…really hope I can win it!

  18. Hoofhearted on

    I should get this because I have always want to hear ” My! What a big charger you have!” Besides, you can never have too much power for your phone.

  19. Dayton Christofferson on

    I need one of these. My battery always dies at the worst times. I like that it’s small and portable. Good luck to everybody that enters!

  20. My poor, old iPhone 4s constantly needs recharged. I have used smaller portable power banks, but this sounds like it would handle multiple recharges before having to recharge the power bank. That would be fabulous! Fast charging is a plus and the multiple charging tips included is great because we have 3 devices with 30 pin, 1 lightning and some micro usb. Not having to keep all those cables within reach would be awesome. Traveling made easy! ?

  21. I like the large capacity and how fast it recharges. That, along with the affordable cost, makes it attractive. Of course, free is better!

    • I’m not sure you can anymore. This review is three years old, and I don’t see it on Amazon right now. That said, many of these are just generic portable chargers marketed under various names, so I am sure you can find something similar.

  22. Pingback: Review: myCharge Hubmax Portable Charge Power Bank

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