Since the advent of the smartphone, better battery life has been a highly requested and much desired “feature.” As the years have progressed, processors have gotten more efficient, the OS has gotten better at managing power, and battery technology has stayed the course. With each iPhone model, Apple has cited “All-Day Battery Life,” but the question always comes up – what type of conditions is that based on?
Following the demand for better battery life, many third party manufacturers (and even Apple, with the introduction of the Smart Battery Case) have created cases that promise to extend your iPhone’s battery. My biggest gripe with many of these is their added bulk, which only becomes more pronounced when carrying an already monstrous iPhone 6S Plus. Fortunately, devices like the Kuke from Kuner are here to add a little power boost without bloating the device.
The Kuke Memory & Battery Case for iPhone 6 Plus/6S Plus is a low-profile case with some nice technological features. Not only does it offer what you’d expect out of a case – protection – it also offers an additional ~80% recharge, and packs some bonus storage space as well.
Clocking in at a cool $79 (for the 16GB model, available this summer at kunertech.com), the Kuke features a 2400mAh battery and adds just 5.2mm to the thickness of the iPhone 6S Plus. It also charges via Apple’s Lightning cable, meaning you don’t need any spare cables to recharge the case, unlike many others on the market.
The case also has a nice look and feel. Made of a hard plastic, it provides enough protection and grip that I’m not terribly concerned about dropping it or roughing up the corners and edges, plus it is very smooth, making it easy to pocket. As is the concern with many cases, the headphone port does not offer much extra space, so plugging in any larger ended cables is a no-go.
The on-board storage of the Kuke case is another great feature that can prove to be a great tool for heavy iOS photographers or videographers. Using the Kuke app, you can offload photos and videos from your camera roll, allowing you to remove them from your device and free up your precious storage space.
This is a great feature for those that purchased a 16GB device, only to wish they’d grabbed more storage up front. It also works great as a way to transfer files to your computer, since the case can be mounted as an external USB drive for easy file access.
From a usability aspect, the case is very straight forward. A small power button on the back is pressed to enable charging (a short tap will indicate the cases current charge), and from there, your iPhone begins regaining life. My only complaint with the button is it’s placement, which seems to fall just right (or wrong?) at the bottom, which has caused me to begin recharging my iPhone inadvertently.
The pain point for me seems to revolve around the Kuke app. Aside from being prompted to install a developer certificate when powering on the case the 1st time (which installs a web clip, which links you to the download of the Kuke app), there seem to be some weird errors within the Kuke experience. The primary use of importing photos/video from the camera roll works wonderfully, but things are less pleasant from there.
Loading in files from external services (like a Safari download or Dropbox file) resulted in an “unsupported file type” error, even when loading a .jpg or .pdf file. These files are successfully copied to the Kuke’s storage, within the Downloaded Documents folder, so the error seems to be programmatic and not a true reflection of what is truly happening with the device. For the average user, this would likely make the experience confusing or frustrating.
The Kuke app (when notifications are enabled) also seemed to have a habit of warning me that storage space was low, and prompted me to offload photos and video to free up some memory. If I were truly low on storage, I might find this helpful, so as to avoid the awkward “Insufficient Space to Take Photo” error, but I received this message even when I had more than 50% of my device’s space (over 20GB) remaining.
Having come from an Indigogo campaign, this is a relatively impressive product, and some refinements to the Kuke app could make it very impressive. As it currently sits, the case is one of the better looking battery cases I’ve seen (and one of only a few available for the 6/6S Plus size). The built-in storage is a great added perk of the case, especially if you takes lots of photos or video on your iPhone.
If you’re in the market for a battery case for you iPhone 6/6S or iPhone 6/6S Plus, the Kuke Memory & Battery Case is a decent option, and with some refinement to their app, might be the best battery case in its price point. Check out all the details over at the their website.