Are you an overactive iPhone user? Addicted to Twitter, Facebook, and e-mail? Is your iPhone battery not lasting as long as you would like it to? If you answer yes to any of these questions you might need emergency backup power. It doesn’t matter about your circumstances, you need a battery pack.
Just Mobile’s Gum Plus, which I tested this week, gives an iPhone over two additional full charges. I don’t have any major complaints about it and I’ll never leave home without it.
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What is it?
The Gum Plus has some advantages that other battery extenders, like the Mophie Juice Pack Air, do not. First, the Gum Plus is small, compact, and offers a lot more battery for your dollar at 4,400mAh and just 5 ounces. The Gum Plus charges via a standard Mini-USB port and features a gauge that shows you the charge status of the Gum Plus. As the Gum Plus empties and your iPhone fills the LEDs in the gauge begin to disappear. Recharging the Gum Plus takes less than four hours. It is also compatible with Apple iPods.
What’s good about it?
In my tests, I started with my iPhone 4 at 100 percent charge and waited until it showed about 30 percent of its own power left. I then attached the Gum Plus to my iPhone 4 and let it charge again to 100 percent. I was able to recharge my iPhone twice on a single Gum Plus charge. On the third charge, that Gum Plus charged the iPhone 4 about 30 percent before it was exhausted. The results: I got several extra days and then some of battery life with heavy iPhone 4 use.
What’s bad about it?
The new Gum Plus ships with two cables: the Mini-USB for charging the Gum Plus and a short USB-to-Dock connector cable. The latter has a problem I’ve complained about before — it is not compatible with Apple’s Bumper case due to the size of the dock connector. Fortunately the cable that comes with the iPhone 4 worked just fine in its place. This is a minor annoyance, but I think vendors need to pay more attention to the size of the dock connector.
That extra time from the extra charges makes the Gum Plus the obvious choice for any active iPhone user. The $70 retail price tag (which is usually about $20 less on the street), larger battery, and the fact that it is compatible with other devices (including iPods or any device that charges from a standard USB port) make it a superior backup charger.
Updated: 10/1/2010 – The vendor pointed out to me that the new product has been renamed to Gum Plus, which is what I actually reviewed here. However, due to the fact that I have also used the original Gum Pro I had the names mixed up. It also didn’t help that everyone else did too. Regardless if you buy either version of this product you’ll still get something worth while. In hindsight I actually prefer the form factor of the older model, but that’s just me. The new version is okay, but the vendor could have left it alone. Oh well, at least it matches my Macbook Pro now.
Company: Just Mobile
Compatibility: iPhone or iPod
List Price: $69.99
Buy Now: Just Mobile Gum Plus is available from Amazon for $50.24