Review: ZeroLemon iPhone X Battery Case

Apple Tree of Knowledge: Do you know the story of the Apple logo? There are a lot of conspiracy theories, myths and coincidences but the creator of the logo, Rob Janoff, kept it simple. Steve Jobs didn’t give him much direction but he took the bite out of the apple so that you would always know it was an apple, no matter the size, and not some other round fruit.

As you can tell, if you are a regular reader of The Mealy Apple, you are WELL aware of my fascination with battery cases.

I used to use a mophie charging case everyday because I used to never be around charging outlets all day. That part of my life has changed and now, I find it hard to strap on a bulky case day after day. With that said, I know there are users out there that could use a battery case all day long, every day. Also, I have to tell you, they are great travel companions.

Enter: ZeroLemon iPhone X 4,000mAh Battery Case with Qi Wireless Charging

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If you have never heard of ZeroLemon, they are a battery case and external battery company. They have been around for quite some time and have gained the trust of their customers year after year.  ZeroLemon also offers their product at a fraction of the cost of their competitors. For example, mophie’s unreleased iPhone X battery case will be around $90-$100 for a 1,720mAh capacity battery. This ZeroLemon case is only $34.99 and offers a massive 4,000mAh battery. Basically, the higher the mAh, the bigger the battery and the longer it will last. So right away, you can see the value the ZeroLemon offers it customers.

Performance

With that 4,000mAh battery, I never had any battery issues. I was never able to run the battery on the case dead and trust me, I tried.  Through texting, listening to podcast, heavy Instagram usage and sometimes a struggling cell service signal, this case got me through the day and I still had battery to spare. When my phone hit 20% I charged it all the way up to 100% and still had around 50% battery in the case left. If I needed to do something or go somewhere that night, I would be confident that this case would keep my phone alive.

Design

Anyone who has ever used a battery case knows they are bulky. You usually know that going into it. You are literally attaching an extra battery to your phone.

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While I expected bulk, this was over the top bulky. It is a massive case. It has a big chin (the bottom part of the case). If you look around Amazon, you can definitely find cases that don’t have as much bulk and a big chin but I have yet to find any reputable brands that offer a better design that I wouldn’t be in fear of catching my phone on fire.

The nice thing about having that big chin is that it re-directs your phone’s speakers and makes it as if your sound is coming from the front and not the bottom.

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The case has four lights on the back of the device along with a power on/off button. Pressing that button once will light up 1 to 4 of the lights to indicate how much battery is left. If 3 of the 4 light up, you have roughly 75% battery remaining in the case.  To turn the case on, and start charging your phone, all you have to do is press and hold that power button. To turn it off, press and hold again. It is a very simple interface.

Charging the Case

Here is one of my pain points and another praise for the case.

To charge the case, it charges by USB Type C. This is becoming the standard in the Android marketplace and accessories in the tech world. The great thing about USB Type C is that it is reversible, like Apple’s Lightning cable.  Keyword there, *like. While I am glad ZeroLemon is using the Type C cable over the outdated Micro USB, I do wish they could of used Apple’s lightning cable.  You can find other battery cases out there with lighting input but…they don’t have wireless charging.  Being that it uses a different charger than your iPhone, your earbuds that come with your phone will not work with this case on. You will have to opt for bluetooth headphones or my favorite Apple AirPods.

IMG_3241This leads me to my favorite thing about the case, Qi wireless charging. If you purchased an iPhone X, more than likely you invested in a wireless charging pad since this is new technology for Apple. It would be a shame if you bought a case that wouldn’t allow you to use that new wireless charger.  Fortunately, you do not have to sacrifice that with ZeroLemon’s product. The wireless charging works great and had I had no issues.

Verdict

Is this the perfect battery case? In my eyes, no. But as of today, that perfect case does not exist. If this case was a little smaller in size, and had a lightning port, it would be perfect.

I feel like there are two options when choose a battery case in today’s market. You either pick one that has a lightning port or one that offers wireless charging. That is a personal decision that you will have to make.

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This is the best battery case for the iPhone X, that I have used. It performs exactly as intended and it is a heck of a great deal.  Coming from a brand like ZeroLemon, I can confidently recommend that you are getting a great quality product, which is very important when dealing with batteries.

If you are someone who is on the go all day, travels a lot or simply wants another option for extra juice, buy this case.  With 4,000mAh of battery, this case will keep you charged up through all of the important times in life and you won’t miss a thing. You will not be disappointed.

Disclaimer – ZeroLemon was kind enough to send me this product to review. Some of the links in this post are affiliate links, and at no additional cost to you, I will make a commission if you decide to purchase after clicking the link.

Let me know in the comments or on Instagram and twitter if you are going to buy one of these.

As always, thanks for stopping by!

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Apple’s New iPad

Apple Tree of Knowledge: Do you know why Apple uses 9:41 am on their displays and packaging for all of their devices? This is the exact time that Steve Jobs announced the original iPad. It used to read 9:42 am because that is when Steve Jobs introduced the first iPhone. But since the iPads release in 2010, 9:41 has been the go-to. Now, you know 🙂

This last week, Apple snuck in a quick little event in Chicago.

When the events were sent out, it was almost a no brainer that it was going to be about iPads in the education market. Also, if you look at the invitation, the drawing looks very much like something that would be been drawn with an Apple Pencil. But the Apple Pencil only works with the iPad Pros, right? Well, this week, Apple showed us the new iPad and that all changed.

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The new iPad is the updated version of the 9.7 inch iPad they released yesterday. Aesthetically, it is the same. You will not see any differences unless you opt for the new gold color.

The greatest upgrade this iPad got was Apple Pencil support. As mentioned above, the Apple Pencil only worked with the iPad Pro before. Now, it works with new, lower end iPad.

Also, the iPad got a new processor upgrade. It was upgraded to the A10 processor that is found in the iPhone 7.

For an entry level iPad, priced at $329, this is an iPad really worth the money. If you are looking to upgrade your iPad Air 2 or earlier, this would be a great upgrade.

Go Pro?

Overall, the iPad Pro is still better than this iPad. But they are also for two different markets. So what are the differences between this new iPad and the iPad Pros?

First off, the Touch ID sensor. The new iPad still uses the 1st generation Touch ID sensor which noticeably slower compared to the fast 2nd generation version found in the latest 10.5 and 12.9 inch iPad Pros. If the rumors are true, we can expect the iPad Pros to receive Face ID this year or next, to match the iPhone X.

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The Apple Smart Connector, that allows easy pairing with compatible keyboards found on the iPad Pro, is missing on the new iPad. That would of been great to have, but you can still buy a 3rd part bluetooth keyboard to use.

One of the biggest selling points for this new iPad is the price. At $329, you get Apple’s full experience and can do what most people do on their iPads. You are not losing much at all. Compared to the $649 and $799 10.5 and 12.9 inch iPad Pros, it is a bargain.

The screen quality isn’t as high as the iPad Pros. But it is sufficient. People who notice a difference are people who need an iPad Pro that are editing photos or videos and require the highest quality available.

The camera’s on this new iPad are not as good as the iPad Pro. But please don’t be that person blocking the person behind you by taking photos with your iPad. Please.

Who is This For?

As I wrote this, it felt like I was putting this new iPad down and then giving excuses for it.  And I kind of was. This iPad is wonderful. If you use your iPad for watching videos, streaming music, reading, checking email, messaging and browsing the internet, this is the iPad for you. There is no doubt about it.

If you are someone who edits photos, videos or audio or are looking to replace your main computer with an iPad, I would look at the iPad Pros. They are extremely powerful and if you are doing that type of work, will be worth the extra money.

The new iPad is available today at Apple.

Are you planning on buying the new iPad? Let me know in the comments or on twitter!

As always, thanks for stopping by!

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All images courtesy of Apple

 

Best Ways to Backup Your iPhone

 

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I can’t stress enough how important it is to backup your device. Working in the wireless industry for years, I have seen too many instances where someone’s phone has died and nothing was backed up. Everything was gone. This is such a preventative measure and I am here to help.

First things first, pictures. I think photos are most peoples number one worry.  I cant tell you how many times I had to tell someone all of their photos were gone. It is not a good feeling. I am going to tell you a couple of different ways to backup your photos.

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Why The New Fitbit Versa Is So Tempting

Last week, Fitbit announced the Fitbit Versa, the company’s newest smart/fitness watch. While this is not the first smart watch Fitbit has released, I think this is the first one that stands a chance against the Apple Watch.

I was very shocked to hear that Fitbit is releasing another smart watch since they just released the Ionic, last October. The Ionic did not get much praise and in my opinion, looked horrendous.

If you remember the Pebble smart watch, before Fitbit acquired them in 2016, the Versa will look extremely familiar. This is a good thing. While I never owned a Pebble, it always seemed so simple, to the point, long lasting and easy to use. Looking at the Versa, I think this will be in the same boat.

Women’s Health

Women will find a new feature that is a first for a smart watch. This watch will track a women’s menstrual cycle.  Fitbit says that it will “log your period, record symptoms & compare your cycle against other health stats like sleep, activity and weight.” I think that this is fantastic and will be a huge selling point. That is until Apple does the same thing later this year, I’m sure.

Software

I’ve used Fitbit’s for years. I have had the Fitbit Flex, Charge and Flex 2. All are great products but far from smart watches. Since then, I have been using the Apple Watch and haven’t looked back.  I really like the Fitbit software on the iPhone so that is an advantage going forward with any Fitbit product. My entire family, for the most part, has a Fitbit of some form. The challenges and competitions you can do within the app is a lot of fun and motivating. That is something the Apple Watch is lacking and can make a huge difference.

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The software on the watch itself is something I have no experience with. Now, they have Fitbit Lab apps that are built specifically for the Fitbit. Hopefully they run a lot better than most apps on the Apple Watch.

Size

From the reports, the Fitbit Versa will be a little bit smaller than the 38 mm Apple Watch.  Fitbit also says that this will be a lightweight device. The Apple Watch is a pretty heavy device on your wrist so a lighter and smaller watch will be welcomed.

Price and Availability

The Versa will be out later this year and cost $199.95 and $229.95 for a special edition, that comes with a woven band.

Closing Thoughts

I am very surprised that this product caught my attention so much. When they released the Ionic, there was no temptation. My Apple Watch works fine for what I use it for but to have a smart watch that lasts 4+ days? Now that is something I could get on board with.

Are you in the market for a smart watch? Do you think the new Fitbit Versa is something you will plan on buying? Let me know on twitter or in the comments!

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Disclosure: Links in this post are affiliate links, and at no additional cost to you, I will make a commission if you decide to purchase after clicking the link.

Images courtesy of Fitbit.

 

Apple’s March Education Event

Today, Apple sent out invites to press announcing an event focused on education.

The event will take place in Chicago on Tuesday, March 27th.

What to expect?

Lately, the rumor mill has been buzzing about a new cheaper MacBook and new iPads. Those two devices definitely make sense in regards to education.

Some other possibilities, but I’m not sure very likely, is the wireless charging AirPower mat and an iPhone SE follow up. I am sure Apple will comment on iOS 11.3 features with a release that day.

Check back here on March 27th where I will recap the event and let you know all of the goodies Apple has graced us with!

Have a great weekend!

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My Favorite Apple Podcasts

I have been a fan of podcasts for close to eight years now. They are great for road trips or if you spend a good bit of your day in a vehicle or in a quiet office. The only downside to listening to so many podcasts is that I don’t have as much time to catch up on the latest music. But that is a decision you can make on your own. If you have never looked into podcasts, I recommend browsing the Apple Podcast app for different topics you might be interested in.

Today, I am going to list my favorite Apple podcasts.

The Talk Show with John Gruber

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John Gruber is the also the creator of one of my favorite sources for all things Apple, daringfireball.net. I love the detail that Gruber puts into this shows. You can count on his shows lasting around 2 to 2 and a half hours. No matter the length, Gruber and friends make the time worth while. Click here to download The Talk Show with John Gruber.

The Rebound

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We go from long form with The Talk Show, to a shorter podcast by Lex Friedman, John Moltz and Dan Moren who discuss the latest Apple news that has developed the previous week. This podcast comes in around 30-35 minutes. There are a lot of podcasts that I wish were shorter. This is one that I wish was around an hour. These guys are funny and never hold back when it comes to their opinions on the latest news. Click here to download The Rebound.

MacBreak Weekly

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Leo Laporte and his network over at Twit.tv, is what got me hooked on podcasts years ago. They have shows about nearly every tech topic but the one that I look forward to the most is MacBreak Weekly. Usually Laporte is joined by Alex Lindsay, Rene Ritchie and Andy Ihnatko. Sometimes other guests join in but this is a great roundtable of Apple talk from people who have been in the industry for quite some time. Click here to download MacBreak Weekly.

The iMore Show

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If you are an Apple fan, surely you’ve heard of the site iMore.com. Rene Ritchie steers the ship over there offering tips, tricks and news of everything Apple. If their site is something that interests you, so will The iMore Show. I like The iMore Show a lot because Serenity Caldwell, Lori Gil, Mikah Sargent and Georgia Dow are all very down to earth and offer more than just news. They offer tons of helpful hints in the Apple world. Click here to download The iMore Show.

Wild Card – A Slab of Glass

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This last one is what I am calling a wild card because as of today, it is unreleased. Recently, I have stumbled across the website Tablet Habit created by Jeff Perry. He writes about living an iPad-first lifestyle and it is very intriguing. Him and YouTuber, Christopher Lawley, are teaming up to talk about the iPad on a brand new show called, A Slab of Glass, and I think they are going to have a great show on their hands. The first episode releases 3/18. Click here to download A Slab of Glass.

Give me a shout on twitter or comment below and let me know what your favorite podcasts are!

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Why I Didn’t Buy The HomePod

You know me, when Apple releases a new product, I jump on the bandwagon. This time, I did not.

Apple finally released the Apple HomePod. This is Apple’s premier speaker that everyone is comparing to the Google Home and Amazon.

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For $350, this speaker is going to be a really good audio device. I currently do not have a Bluetooth speaker. I am either listening to podcasts or music through my iPhone X speakers, AirPods or in my car. It has crossed my mind to buy a speaker but the maximum I would spend would be around $200. Yes, supposedly this speaker is very high quality, but that is it. To me, that $350 is not worth it to me. Im not 100% against spending that kind of money on a speaker but I want it to be smart. Enter Siri.

Siri is still Siri. If Siri is ever updated, that is when I will spend the extra money on one of Apple’s speakers. The great thing about this device’s smarts, and Siri, is that it can all be updated through software. I don’t expect there to be sequels to the HomePod nearly as often as most of Apple’s products. I really just hope Apple starts paying more attention to Siri as Google and Amazon has done with their platforms.

Sorry HomePod, I’m not saying never, just not today.

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Disclosure: All links in this post are affiliate links, and at no additional cost to you, I will make a commission if you decide to purchase after clicking the link.

Images courtesy of Apple.com