Powergorilla Portable Laptop and Device Charger Lightning Review

The gadget: The Powergorilla, an 8.5 x 5 thin brick of a battery that charges laptops, phones, and many other portable devices on the go. You can adjust voltage options between 16, 19 or 24v, and the on-board LCD screen will show you your selection and how much juice is left in the unit. The battery gives you about two to five extra hours for your laptop, and about 20ish on smaller gadgets like phones.

The Price: £150 ($US227)

The Verdict: It works great. In our tests, the Powergorilla gave our MacBook Pro an extra 2.5 hours of battery life in everyday blogging usage. That's on top of whatever the internal battery already supplies. The unit doesn't come with a MagSafe adaptor, because of Apple's proprietary patent, so you'll have to buy a MagSafe airline adaptor and connect via that. It still works, but it's an extra $US50 on top of the $US227.

Charging phones is an easier premise. As long as your phone can charge from USB, you're set. If not, there are other more proprietary tips and adapters that come with the unit. We couldn't test this ourselves, but Powertraveller also claims that the Powergorilla has many safety features, including voltage limitation, short circuit/voltage/overheat protection. Those are good things to have if you're operating this on an airplane.

Do we recommend this as a gadget? Definitely. Two and a half hours of backup laptop battery is always welcome, and the ability to emergency-charge your phones, iPods and GPS devices on the go is very handy. However, if you're only going to use this as a backup battery for your notebook, we'd recommend you just invest in a spare battery or two. $US227 isn't cheap, but it is worth it if you're a traveller with a lot of different gadgets to charge. [Powergorilla ]

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