People use their phones all day, which can lead to a dwindling battery on a particularly busy one. Android phones have great battery life, but even they need a little help from time to time. If you rely on something like a battery case just to keep your phone running, you're not alone. Battery cases are convenient, but they do have some drawbacks, including being bulky and heavy, as well as negatively affecting wireless reception at times. That's why nothing beats a dedicated portable charger or power bank that you can store easily and only take out when you absolutely need it. With both wired and wireless models, there's a slew of options when it comes to keeping your Android device going.
To that end, I've rounded up top picks for the best portable charger for Android devices. Though they cost more, I personally like batteries that have an integrated USB-C output built into them so I don't have to worry about carrying around a charging cable for enough power for my devices. (The models with built-in USB-C cables should also work for iPad Pro devices.) But I've also included some budget picks for those who don't want to shell out as much for portable power and their charging needs. And, while we have a separate power bank roundup for iPhones, anything here without an integrated USB-C cable will work perfectly well with an iPhone (and non-Pro iPad models), so long as you provide the Lightning cable.
Read more: Best Wireless Car Chargers and Mounts for 2023
Best battery packs with built-in USB-C cables and foldout wall plugs
Infinity Lab is Samsung-owned Harman Kardon's new accessories subsidiary and I like its InstantGo 5000 and InstantGo 10000 power banks, which come with an integrated USB-C cable for easy charging for iPhones. The larger 10,000-mAh model costs nearly $50 more and is heavier and bulkier, but it can charge most Android smartphones twice. Though the white model is currently unavailable, the black one is in stock.
MyCharge's Hub portable chargers come in a few different sizes and not only have an integrated foldable wall plug but integrated Lightning and USB-C cables, so you can charge both Apple and Android devices. It's a little bulky, but with a 4,400-mAh battery, it should be able almost fully charge your smartphone, depending on its size. The step-up 6,700-mAh model is about $20 more.
Best high-capacity power banks with PD quick charge
The Anker 523 PowerCore Slim 10K PD is impressively slim for a 10,000-mAh portable phone charger and has a fast 20-watt USB-C out charging port (it's also a USB-C input to charge its battery), plus a 12-watt USB-A out port. While the Anker 313 PowerCore Slim 10K is cheaper, the fast USB-C out charging makes spending the extra dough worth it if you have a USB-C to Lightning cable.
The Anker PowerCore III 10K portable charger has fast USB-C out charging (18 watts) as well as a USB-A port and up to 10-watt wireless charging. It's not magnetic, so your phone won't stick to it but it will wirelessly charge any Qi-enabled devices.
If you're looking for a compact external battery pack for your Android smartphone (or iPhone), Mophie's pocketable Power Station Mini features a 5,000-mAh internal battery and 20-watt USB-C PD fast charging.
For $20 more, you can pick up the 10,000-mAh version with dual USB-C ports -- both come in black or blue colors. Also, note that Zagg, Mophie's parent company, offers a 20% discount off your first purchase, so that model (it's simply called the Power Station) is actually $50.
Best battery packs with foldout wall plug (no cable)
Thanks to gallium nitride technology, chargers have been getting more powerful while shrinking at the same time. The latest example of that trend is Anker's new line of GaNPrime chargers with next-generation GaN 3 technology that the company says is even more energy-efficient. The Anker Power Bank 733, which combines a 65-watt charger with a 10,000-mAh portable battery, is part of the new GaNPrime line. It's pretty compact for what it is and offers two fast-charging USB-C ports and one fast-charging USB-A port. You can charge up to three devices at once, but note that to get a full 65-watt charge for a laptop, you'll have to plug in just the laptop.
This Anker model is basically an oversized wall charger with a built-in 5,000-mAh battery. It's got two standard USB charging ports for simultaneously juicing up your phone and a secondary gadget (or two phones). And a little LED indicator on the side lets you check the charge level at the press of a button.
Best portable wireless Qi chargers
What's cool about Anker's 622 magnetic battery is that it's a wireless battery that has an integrated magnetic flap that converts into a stand. You won't get fast wireless charging from this 5,000-mAh battery (it charges at up to 7.5 watts) but it's slim and easy to carry around.
It charges via USB-C and if you use a USB-C to USB-C to charge your Android device (or iPhone), it will charge at a faster rate of 12 watts. That's not as fast as a 20-watt USB-C power adapter, but it's faster than the usual 7.5 watts.
Mophie's magnetic power bank is similar to Anker's but is slightly slimmer (it's svelte for 5,000-mAh battery) and doesn't have an integrated flap that converts into a stand. While it's designed to adhere to the back of MagSafe-enabled iPhone or MagSafe cases, it comes with a "snap adapter" ring to stick onto the back of Android devices so they'll be magnet-friendly.
Wireless charging speeds appear to be limited to 7.5 watts, but if you need a faster charge, you can connect a USB-C to USB-C cable to bump the speed up to 12 watts.
Otterbox gears its Folding Wireless Power Bank toward those who like to watch movies on their phones or play games with a controller. It has a built-in stand that folds down when you take it on the go. It also has USB-C and USB-A ports that are capable of fast-charging your phone at up to 18 watts. The wireless charging is up to 7.5 watts with the iPhone and 10 watts for Android devices.
Portable battery packs compared
We used all the models above in recent anecdotal testing. Each battery pack highlighted above are ones we recommend over the dozens if not hundreds of others currently on sale at Amazon and elsewhere, which is why we zeroed in on a handful of favorite brands: Mophie, MyCharge and Anker, with some notable one-offs from Aukey, Ventev, Moshi and Harman Kardon thrown in for good measure.
What to look for in a battery pack
Here are a few things to keep in mind when shopping for a battery pack:
- A higher power rating (mAh, short for milliamp hours) for a battery pack means more charges -- but also a heavier weight.
- For the latest Android phones, you should buy a battery with at least a 3,000-mAh capacity, which should give you at least one full charge. With the exception of the Harman Kardon, all the models featured above hit that mark.
- Multiple USB-out ports will let you charge and recharge more than one phone or device at a time.
- These products all use lithium-ion (li-ion) rechargeable batteries, and should thus always be stored in carry-on luggage when flying. Airlines and regulatory agencies are increasingly banning li-ion batteries in checked baggage.
- A few of the battery pack options above are USB-PD (power delivery) models, which provide faster charging of phones with varying battery capacity and other USB-C products that support fast charging. These PD chargers will charge larger USB-C devices (laptops, Nintendo Switch and the like), as well as USB-C enabled iPad Pros, but sometimes at slower rates than larger-wattage wall chargers.