It isn't the most efficient or price-conscious way to keep your Galaxy S5 powered up, but it will be a great choice for specific users
TYLT makes some great accessories, and is probably best known for its chargers, batteries and cases. Its latest product, the Energi Sliding Power Case for the Galaxy S5, combines a couple of those categories in hopes of reducing the friction involved with keeping your phone charged up at all times.
Sure there are external battery packs out there, as well as rapid wall chargers and even replacement batteries on devices such as the Galaxy S5 that can swap them on the fly, but all of those solutions have inherent compromises. If you need a case that can protect your phone and then quickly move to keeping it charged without powering down or fiddling with any parts, the Sliding Power Case may be one choice for you. Read along and see what this case is all about.
The Sliding Power Case is a two-piece situation, made up of a slim soft touch and rubber case that's specially designed to fit inside of a larger plastic case that contains a 2800mAh battery. The phone case portion of the combo fits onto the Galaxy S5 easily, doesn't add much bulk and is quite stylish — and that's good, as you'll likely be using it full-time in order to make this case purchase worth it. It contains a neat piece of engineering on the bottom that holds back the waterproofing Micro USB port flap on the bottom of the phone, letting it attach cleanly to the battery pack portion of the case.
The battery pack is a bit of a monstrosity, with most of the battery being concentrated toward the bottom half of the case, and a big "chin" on the bottom where the circuitry is to power the Micro USB plug that fits into the phone. Pull back the bottom flap on your Galaxy S5 and slot the two cases together, and you'll see everything come together into this bulky but functional case. The battery pack portion has holes for the speaker and microphone as well as the camera, a standard Micro USB port on the bottom to charge the case (and the attached Galaxy S5 if it's plugged in), and a button on the back that starts the power flowing and has an LED indicating the charge state.
The combined case is rather large, but isn't too terribly unwieldy if the goal is to keep you using your phone while it's charging. I definitely wouldn't want to use a phone this thick and heavy every day, but then again I don't want to be plugged into a wall outlet all day, either.
Taking the Sliding Power Case for a whirl, I charged it up completely and plugged it into my Galaxy S5 that had just hit 10 percent battery. In a little under an hour and a half, my Galaxy S5 had topped up to 60 percent battery before the case indicated it was completely out of power. This was with minimal use of my Galaxy S5, though I did have the screen on for a good 15 minutes getting a few things done.
Now considering that the Sliding Power Case has a battery capacity that's exactly the same as the Galaxy S5's battery you may expect to get a bit more out of it. But taking into account the "line loss" associated with transferring power from one battery to another, and the fact that the phone was powered on and in-use while charging, a full 50 percent bump in the battery is plenty good in my book. And when you think about the fact that you can continue to use the phone as you normally would while its charging, that's an added bonus.
At $79.99, the TYLT Energi Sliding Power Case isn't the cheapest accessory you'll buy for your phone, but it may be the right one to choose if you just can't afford to spend time tethered to a wall charging or dealing with an external battery pack dangling off of your phone. But if you're just looking for the best bang-for-buck way to charge up any phone (not just a Galaxy S5), you'll be better off with a standalone battery pack solution.