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Back in February, we brought you word of the new battery packs that BioLite was releasing. Well, we’ve recently been spending time with one – the BioLite Charge PD 40 – and can give you our thoughts on the device.

First and foremost – yes, it’s a battery pack, and it works just like any others you may have used. In terms of total output, you’re limited to at most 18W, across the three ports you’ve got (two USB-A, and one USB-C). The USB-C also works for charging up the battery, so you’ll want to travel with that cord if you’re topping it up on the road.

In terms of usage, you’ve got the button on it (just like with other BioLite products) to see how much charge is left in the battery pack. It’s a simple 4-light layout, so you can estimate things in 25% chunks. Here, the LEDs are in yellow to match the yellow stripe along the top of the battery pack. The rest of the body is in grey, and things are slightly textured. Given the way that the printing is done on the back, you can see that there is a layer around the internal plastic (which is the actual grey bit) so you’ve got a little bit of drop protection. It’s not ruggedized by any means, and as with any battery, you don’t want to be putting them through the wringer unless you’re really a fan of uncontrollable fire.

I’ve used the BioLite Charge PD 40 to charge up my phone, and it’s just as speedy as hooking it into the high-speed brick at home on the USB-C; using USB-A you get normal (not fast) charge speeds, but that’s par for the course. While many battery packs are dark tones to fit in with use in a work place, or to just be unobtrusive, the bright yellow stands out here. Those are the brand colors, but I think it also works to make the BioLite Charge PD 40 easier to see, whether it’s under stuff in a tent or just at the bottom of a deep pocket on your bag.

So, I could definitely see the BioLite Charge PD 40 becoming the default battery pack we grab when we head out camping, to be able to top up the phones at the campsite (need to check those weather forecasts, don’t you know). As reviewed, the 10,000 mAh version runs $49.95, with the 6,000 mAh version at $29.95 and 20,000 mAh version running $69.95. As always, you can pick those up directly at bioliteenergy.com

Details from BioLite

  • 10,000 mAh Li-Ion rechargeable battery
  • 2.5 smartphone charges
  • Charge multiple devices at once
  • 1x USB-C PD port, up to 18W
  • 2x USB-A Quick Charge Out ports
  • Quick Charge 3.0 Protocol
  • Portable & durable design
  • FAA Carry-On Compliant
  • OUTPUT 
    • USB C-PD: 5V/3.0A, 9V/2A, 12V/1.5A
    • USB A: 5V/3.0A, 9V/2A, 12V/1.5A
    • TOTAL OUTPUT POWER 18W
  • WEIGHT 9.4 oz (265 g)
  • DIMENSIONS 5.9 x 3.2 x 0.7 in (150 x 81 x 17 mm)

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By Patrick Kansa

A big data developer and leader with a penchant for gadgets, books, watches and beverages. You can find my work on WristWatchReview, Knapsack.News, and Slushpile. If you're on Twitter and/or Instagram, you'll find me there as @PatrickWatches.