- Editor Rating
- Rated 3 stars
- MOTA Extended Battery Case iPhone 5/5S (MFi)
- Reviewed by:
- Published on:
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- Cosmetic AppealEditor: 40%
- Design & Build QualityEditor: 50%
- FeaturesEditor: 70%
- FunctionEditor: 80%
- Value For The PriceEditor: 70%
The MOTA Extended Battery Case provides your iPhone with a built-in 2400mAh battery.
Recent research shows that 25% of the smartphone market is made up of iPhone users, however there are still several significant drawbacks to owning popular device. The battery life for example, is one of the largest reasons why new iPhone users complain about the device and the tests show that it stacks up poorly against the competition.
However, this can be a problem of the past if you're willing to invest into an aftermarket accessory like a battery case. The MOTA Extended Battery Case iPhone 5/5S (MFi) will provide your iPhone with more than double the standard battery life, perfect for those times where you will not have access to a wall outlet for an extended period of time. The case comes in four color choices with an MSRP of $99.99, but Amazon is currently selling it for just over half that price.
MOTA provided us with a test sample of their extended battery case in blue so this review is based solely on our hand-on use with the product. It is important to note that the case also came with an extra clear plastic frame which is not shown in the photos above.
Design & Build Quality
The MOTA Extended Battery Case features simple design and is far less complicated than multi-layer competitors like the OtterBox Commuter Series Wallet. The base of the case is comprised of a thick plastic shell which houses the 2400 mAh battery assembly. On the front of this base, you'll find a lighting connection which connects to your iPhone 5/5s lighting port to charge the device. On the back side, there is a cutout for the camera/flash, a collapsible kick-stand for hands-free landscape viewing, 4 LEDs to signify battery levels, and a push-button to turn the case on or off.
The case does add some bulk to the slim design of the iPhone 5/5s, but is still manageable by all means. If you're looking for the exact dimensions, the MOTA case measures in at 16.6 X 62.3 X 137 mm compared to the standard iPhone 5/5s which is 7.6 X 58.6 X 123.8 mm.
While your iPhone plugs into the base of the case, the plastic frame is what secures your phone in place. The base of this case is well-built and it feels as though it will can take a beating. However, the plastic frame is weak and flimsy thus reminding me of the cheap see-thru plastic material often used in children's toys.
I think the biggest downfall of this case as a whole is this cheap plastic frame. Since it looks and feels cheap it severely decreases the appeal and protection elements which ruins the overall potential of a case that had a lot going for it. Had MOTA spend a little more time and money designing a higher-quality, solid colored frame then I think they could have had a real winner on their hands at least in the design and appeal department.
The most obvious selling point of this case is the built-in 2400 mAh battery. If you do your research, you'll quickly realize how tough it is to find a competitor whom offers such high-capacity battery as virtually all competing models stay within 1200-2100 mAh range. In comparison, the native iPhone 5 battery only contains 1440 mAh and the iPhone 5s has a 1560 mAh battery. So in short, the MOTA's integrated battery has 960 mAh (840 mAh for iPhone 5s) more power capacity which equals out to 166% or 154% of extra juice.
Secondary features of this case include full 360-degree protection thanks to the included clear adhesive screen protector as well as a built-in kickstand for table-top use. The rear LEDs are a nice touch, giving you a real-time idea of how much power is left in the case and they look pretty cool when lit up.
While the MOTA Extended Battery Case surely isn't the most attractive, but its performance lived up to the hype. Throughout my testing, the 2400 mAh battery allowed me to go well over a day without needing to resort to a power outlet and is dead simple to use. I preferred to initiate the case's power benefits when my iPhone got under 30% rather than cut it any closer, but of course you have the choice to turn the power capabilities on whenever it is most convenient for you.
Something I did not like about this case was how hard it was to access the built-in kickstand. The kickstand stored away in a position that is tough to “unsnap” unless you have long fingernails. Since I'm a male and even worse, I have a tendency to bite my fingernails, this was not a good match and was near impossible to accomplish.. However, I did test this kickstand with several females (whom have long nails) and they were able to access it with ease.
I found the rear LEDs to be cool looking, they were obnoxious at night since they stay lit up while charging and the blue glow literally lit up my bedroom. This caused it to be rather distracting while I tried to sleep, although this can be easily fixed with a small piece of electrical tape or simply by covering the phone while it lay on my nightstand.
While I don't think the average consumer would buy the MOTA with protection as their primary focus, it does a suitable job keeping your device free of accidental scratches and dings. On the other hand, if you were to drop the device from knee-height or above, I'd expect the cheap plastic frame to shatter thus rendering your case useless until you equip a new frame (each case ships with 2 frames).
After using the MOTA Extended Battery case for a few weeks, I found the power capabilities significantly boosted my iPhone 5's battery life despite the ugly plastic frame which hindered its visual appeal. The 360-degree coverage provides protection from everyday scratches and dings, however I wouldn't expect the case to survive a long fall. If you were to buy the case for the discounted price found on retailers like Amazon ($55 when this review was written) and don't mind the tacky appearance then this product is a solid buy. However, if you're interested in sacrificing power capacity in exchange for a more durable build quality and a sleeker appeal then you're likely be better off choosing another option such as the Mophie Juice Pack Plus.
As a graduate of the University of Massachusetts and our Managing Editor, Colt loves testing out the newest tech products/services. His goal is to help better educate other consumers to ensure the most satisfying purchases decisions on consumer electronics and services. When he is not working on creating new content, Colt enjoys spending time with his two Australian Shepherds, Mia and Zoey.