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Incipio Offgrid Express for iPhone 6/6S review: Great battery case at a reasonable price

The Incipio Offgrid Express fully charges your iPhone and it doesn't cost as much as some of its competitors.

Lynn La Senior Editor / Reviews - Phones
Lynn La covers mobile reviews and news. She previously wrote for The Sacramento Bee, Macworld and The Global Post.
Lynn La
3 min read

If you're looking for a slim battery case to charge your iPhone on the go, but you don't want to spend more than $100, the Incipio Offgrid Express is a good $80 option (or £60 and approximately AU$110). The accessory offers a meaty 3,000mAh battery and it can double your phone's battery life for a good deal less than Mophie's $120 Juice Pack Plus.


Incipio Offgrid Express for iPhone 6/6S

The Good

The Incipio Offgrid Express will fully charge the iPhone once and powers up your phone's battery just as well as more expensive chargers.

The Bad

The case has a few inelegant open seams that look unattractive and awkward.

The Bottom Line

The Incipio Offgrid Express has some design flaws, but get this over the pricier Mophie Juice Pack.

Though its battery reserves aren't as high as the Juice Pack Plus (the Mophie sports 3,300mAh battery) and its design isn't as clean cut, Incipio's case does essentially the same thing and works just as well.

To use the Offgrid Express, plug the handset into the battery charger and snap the bumper around the phone's edges to attach both pieces together. For the first few times, I had a hard time snapping the bumper into place all the way since there always seemed to be a gap at the seams. But as I kept fastening the case together throughout the day, I eventually got the hang of it.

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On the bottom right edge is a button that turns on the indicator lights so you know how much charge is left. You can also long press the button to turn the charger on and off. The case uses Micro-USB charge, which is common for iPhone battery cases. Because of this, you'll need two different cords to charge your case and iPhone (the latter uses a proprietary eight-pin Lightning connection). If this is a big deal for you, Apple has its own Smart Battery Case that uses the eight-pin port too.

During my time with the case, I saw that it did attract some fingerprint smudges, but they're much easier to wipe off compared to Mophie's case. The Offgrid Express also adds extra bulk to your device, especially at the bottom. Because your headphones may not fit through the case and into the handset's headphone jack, Incipio included a headphone port extender. In addition, a small rectangle on the left of the case is cut out to allow users access to the phone's ring/silent switch. Given the overall thickness of the case, that means you'll need to dig your fingers a bit deeper to toggle this on and off.

Enlarge Image

Although not a deal-breaker, some of the case's open spaces are unseemly.

Josh Miller/CNET

When I attached the case, I noticed a few small gaps between the case and the handset itself -- one was around the aforementioned toggle switch. Another was between the bottom of the phone and the case's chin, where the indicators lights are. Incipio carved out two narrow spaces in the chin so audio from the phone's bottom speaker can escape. While this is necessary for sound to come through, and there's nothing functionally wrong about these open seams, it's still unseemly. Especially since I can see a small slither of a headphone jack between the phone and the case.

It took about 55 minutes for the case to charge an iPhone 6 to 50 percent, and about 2 hours and 35 minutes to charge the device up to 99 percent. By the end of it, the case was nearly tapped out too. In comparison, the Juice Pack Plus took about a half hour shorter and still had plenty of charge leftover.

Though Incipio's Offgrid Express doesn't have as big of a battery or charges as fast as the Mophie Juice Pack Plus, it can still fully charge your iPhone quickly and conveniently. It's also about $40 cheaper (about £28 or AU$54), so you'll save money without compromising performance.


Incipio Offgrid Express for iPhone 6/6S

Score Breakdown

Design 7Features 8Performance 9