Review: Anker Power Core 26.800 mAh High Capacity Powerbank

Until last year I’ve been using two different powerbanks from AmazonBasics. One as my every day power bank and one for traveling. Then, all of a sudden, Amazon sent an eMail asking us customers to stop using those powerbanks because they may catch fire under certain circumstances and even issued a refund for the two powerbanks. I used the refund to get two new powerbanks from Anker. One, my every day carry powerbank, is the Anker Power Core II Slim powerbank that I reviewed in this blog post.

The second one I bought was the Anker Power Core 26800 mAh powerbank that I bought as a travel accessory to keep all my devices charged during a trip. After months of using it, I’m reviewing it here.

But let me start with a short chapter about powerbanks and carry on luggage based on a recent event at the Airport Berlin.

Carry On Luggage compliant Powerbanks

You know that I love to travel light and usually travel only with carry on luggage (using my carry on compliant Osprey Farpoint 40 backpack).

So, recently, during on the flight back from the abandoned sanatoriums at Grabowsee near Berlin, I was pulled out during the security check for additional inspection. The security guy was particularly interested in my powerbank. Here’s what I’ve learned from this procedure.

I was aware that we travelers have to put powerbanks in our carry on luggage; but I wasn’t aware that there are some limits.An article on the website of the federal aviation association says, that powerbanks in carry on luggage are limited to 100 watt hours.

Unfortunately, vendors market their powerbanks using their capacity in „mAh“. So how do you know if your powerbank is compliant?

Simple solution: Check the tech specs on the vendors site like the specification for the Anker Power Core 26800 mAh, which has 96 watt hours. If you can’t find that value in the tech specs, you can do the calculation yourself.

No matter what the vendor tells you about your powerbank, a lithium ion battery has a nominal voltage of 3.6-3.8 Volts. Always (Didn’t know that either)! To calculate the watt hours, you need to do the following:

„mAh“ x „nominal voltage“ / 1000.

So for the Anker Power Core 26800 mAh this would be:

„26800 mAh“ x „3.6 volt“ / 1000 = 96.48 watt hours.

And that’s exactly the same value mentioned on the website of Anker. So the Anker Power Core II 26800 mAh is only just carry on compliant. If it would have just 1000 mAh more, it wouldn’t be carry on compliant.

The Anker Power Core 26800 powerbank

Anker Power Core 26800 mAh powerbank

Anker Power Core 26800 mAh powerbank

This powerbank from Anker is currently the „biggest beast“ sold by Anker. I bought it specifically for traveling to:

  • Keep my iPhone, iPad, and Apple Watch charged during long flights (12-24 hours). A necessity because I usually do quite a bit of photo editing during such flights.
  • Keep my iPhone charged while using it as a navigation system on road trips
  • Charge my iPhone and Apple Watch during 3-4 day trips without the need to crawl on the floor of hotel rooms to find a power outlet.

I used the Anker Power Core 26800 during over a dozen trips and it did its duty without any problems.

The Anker Power Core 26800 allows you to charge up to three devices at once. Based on my travel and usage experience, from the last months this means you can:

  • Charge an iPhone X up to 6.5 times
  • Get two full charges for an iPad Pro 10.5
  • Charge an iPad Pro 10.5 once and an iPhone X up to 3 times.
  • Get one full charge for an iPad Pro 10.5, one for an iPhone X, one for your Apple Watch and you still have 1/3 left (for one more iPhone charge or two full charges for your kindle).

Though I don’t use that feature, the Anker Power Core 26.800 supports pass through. So you can charge the powerbank while it charges up to three devices.

Speaking of charging the powerbank itself. It has two charging ports. If you use both of them to charge the powerbank, it will take roughly 6.5 hours.

That capacity and performance comes with a tradeoff: size and weight. The Power Core 26800 measures 7 x 3.1 x 0.9 inch and weighs 500 grams. In this case and for me, convenience and capacity trumps size and weight.

The PowerCore 26800 mAh powerbank comes in two flavors:

Having used the Anker Power Core 26800 mAh powerbank on over a dozen trips, its definitely a carry on compliant powerbank I recommend for traveling. Both models have quite good (4.5+) reviews on Amazon. Check them out using the two links above.