The Samsung Galaxy S3 gets a good Mophie-style case/charger combo
Ed. Note: Droidax has fixed a design flaw we spotted in our initial review. This review was updated on Oct. 23, 2012.
Like many a first wife in Texas has said, you can never have too much power. (At least that's what I assume first wives in Texas say. But then again I watch a lot of "Dallas.") To that end, we present the Droidax Power Pack for the Samsung Galaxy S3.
If this idea looks familiar, it should. It's in the same vein as arguably the most important iPhone accessory -- the Mophie Juicepack. This is a dual-function accessory -- it's a case and an external 2300 mAh battery combined, prolonging life in more ways than one.
Piqued your interest yet?
Read on for some more thoughts.
The Droidax Power Pack is, for the most part, a pretty slick case/battery. A cattery, if you will. It comes in two pieces, the larger of which houses the battery and electronics. The small upper mostly holds the whole thing together. (We'll explain that "mostly" part in a minute.)
The whole thing is done up in soft-touch coating, which feels great in the hand. There are cutouts for the speaker, flash and rear camera. There also are cutouts for the power button and volume rocker on either side of the phone, but they're still a little tough to get to because of the way they angle ever-so-slightly downward.
The case does add some significant bulk to the phone, growing it from 8.6mm thick to nearly 15mm thick, and on nearly a centimeter in height as well. Not that it was a small phone to begin with.
The butt of the case (or maybe it's the crotch) where it mates with the bottom front of the Galaxy S3, is nearly flush, and it's a good look and feel. There's a small hole there for the mic, and you can easily depress the home button.
'Round back you'll find four bright LEDs for letting you know the charging status of the case, and a power button to quickly check the charge with a short press, and to turn the whole thing on with a long press. Standard stuff, really.
If you're looking for a way to quickly juice up your Galaxy S3, this isn't it. But neither is it designed to be. Input voltage is listed at 5V == 600 mAh, and output is 5.0 ± 3.25V == 500 mAh. So it'll get the job done, but quick ain't its style. Droidax recommends using the included microUSB cable for charging.
Here's what really has us worried, though: The upper part of the case doesn't really hold the phone it. It's extremely easy to lift the GS3 out of the case from the top. That's worrisome enough because it's possible to drop the phone, we imagine. But worse is that you can pry out the phone from the top and bend the microUSB plug at the bottom of the case. And worse than that is that doing so could possibly damage the phone. And that's a scary thought, and something to keep in mind.
- Nearly doubles the battery life on the phone
- Simple to install and remove
- Price is nice at $49 each
- Available in blue or white
- Design is a bit suspect
- Possible to damage the microUSB plug or the phone
The bottom line
This is not a bad product. And for $49, it's definitely not a bad product. But that thing about possibly bending the microUSB plug and/or damaging the phone is scaring the hell out of us. It's the only thing keeping us from giving the Droidax Power Pack a resounding "Hell, yeah!"
Otherwise, this is the sort of accessory we love to see for Android phones, and of which there aren't enough. It's just that the Droidax Power Pack falls a tad flat.
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