Although Apple remains conservative regarding the battery life of the Apple Watch, many users have noted that the wearable device makes it through one day with plenty of charge left over in its 18-hour estimated life. Still, third-party power banks and portable chargers have been popular mainstays in the Apple Watch accessory line, and recently Kanex launched its own charging device for the Apple Watch, called the GoPower Watch.

Kanex's charger is packed with a 4,000 mAh battery and a claim that, on a full charge, it can recharge the Apple Watch up to six times with an integrated inductive charger. As a bonus, the GoPower Watch also includes a USB port, letting you charge your iPhone (or any USB-powered device) simultaneously with the Apple Watch. There's also priority charging, so your devices charge first and the battery pack second.

Design

Kanex's GoPower Watch meets the form and function that any successful portable battery pack needs to be used on a daily basis. Its small 3-inch square will fit comfortably in a backpack, and the quartered LED lights -- surrounding the only button on the housing -- provide quick and easy reminders of how much juice is left in the pack.

kanex-review-4
The slightly raised inductive charger is surrounded by a smooth Space Gray material (admittedly, a few shades darker than Apple's definition of Space Gray), that feels sturdy despite the small frame of the GoPower Watch. Interestingly, the actual inductive charger on Kanex's device is a bit larger than Apple's own inductive charger, but its added 1/4 of an inch appears negligible and doesn't affect the charging of the device.

kanex-review-8

GoPower Watch compared with Apple's Magnetic Charger

Otherwise, the design is no-frills. The front and rear of the pack are made up of a black, plastic-type material that's a bit more fingerprint-attractive than the Space Gray of the rest of the device. On the back users will find the micro-USB port to charge up the battery pack, and the USB Type-A port for smartphone charging. Anyone opposed to large branding on their products probably won't like the prevalent Kanex logo on the front of the unit, however.

Charging the Apple Watch

After using Kanex's GoPower Watch battery for a week, I found that the company's claims of six full recharges on an Apple Watch to be right on the money. The battery pack uses a simple circle of lights, cut into four quarters, to display the remaining charge in its 4,000 mAh battery. The GoPower Watch lost its first quarter of battery in the middle of the third charge of my Apple Watch, and then finally lost the second quarter in the sixth Apple Watch charge.

kanex-review-5
From there the battery status declined quickly, and after the pack filled my Apple Watch up to 100% life for the sixth time, the final portion of the ring began flashing and the battery quickly died. During these tests I didn't charge my iPhone, focusing first on the company's own Apple Watch-heavy marketing for the accessory. And in that sense, the GoPower Watch delivered on its promises. The average charging time of all the tests was about 90 minutes.

If used solely as a power bank for an Apple Watch, Kanex's device will easily provide its intended six full recharges on Apple's wearable, although the larger battery on the Apple Watch Series 2 means those models might get slightly fewer charge cycles. Although that might be a bit of overkill for most casual Apple Watch wearers, the combination of the integrated inductive charger and deep well of battery life could justify the $99 price tag for those who find themselves away from a traditional power source on a consistent basis.

Charging the iPhone

After depleting the GoPower Watch during my Apple Watch tests, I topped off the battery pack again -- a lengthy process that takes the large part of an afternoon, which is the case for most battery packs -- and focused on the iPhone. With the GoPower Watch fully charged, I managed to recharge my iPhone 6s Plus from 10 percent to 99 percent charge over the course of about two hours, after which Kanex's battery was down to 50 percent.

In a subsequent test, to see how much percentage I could add onto my iPhone with the rest of the GoPower Watch's battery, the battery pack swiftly whittled down to 25 percent and then died, adding on about 15 percent charge to my iPhone. Considering the 2,750 mAh within the iPhone 6s Plus, one full charge with a little left over makes sense coming off of the GoPower Watch's 4,000 mAh battery.

kanex-review-1
Although smaller smartphones could get more out of it, like the iPhone SE (1,624 mAh), iPhone 6s (1,715 mAh) and iPhone 7 (1,960 mAh), the GoPower Watch is simply not an iPhone accessory; it's an Apple Watch accessory that could potentially recharge your iPhone in a pinch, with very little left over for your watch. Simultaneous charging of each device also negates the portability such battery packs allow for smartphones, since the Apple Watch needs to remain on a flat surface to stay attached to the inductive charger.

For iPhone battery packs, similarly priced accessories, like Mophie's powerstation XXL, give users upwards of 20,000 mAh for around $100. Other brands, including Anker, offer similar battery capacities at even cheaper prices. As such, it's hard to harp on GoPower Watch's clear intent to focus on Apple Watch over iPhone, but it's an aspect of the accessory that should still be noted.

Bottom Line

Overall, GoPower Watch's solid design and integrated induction charger make it one of the most enticing charging solutions on the market for Apple's wearable device, if you're an Apple Watch power user and in need of one, that is. Lack of Nightstand Mode and closed-loop band support could, however, be deal-breakers for some.

kanex-review-7

The display shows the GoPower Watch's dwindling battery

Compared to other Apple Watch battery packs, Kanex's solution is a slightly steeper monetary investment, but its higher-capacity battery justifies the price. Nomad's Pod, for comparison, costs $29.95 but provides an 1,800 mAh battery, or the ability to keep your Apple Watch "powered all weekend," according to the company.

If you repeatedly find yourself scrambling for a power source for your Apple Watch when not at home, and want to invest in something you won't have to constantly remind yourself to charge all too often, the GoPower Watch makes a reliable case for itself. Just remember that it won't provide much in the way of repeat charges to a smartphone, especially any larger-screened models with higher-capacity batteries.

Pros
- Clean design with soft, attractive Space Gray material
- Integrated inductive charger
- Charging Apple Watch as quickly and reliably as first-party accessories
- Meets Kanex's claim of six full Apple Watch charges

Cons
- Dies quickly when charging bigger devices through USB-A port
- Doesn't support Nightstand Mode or closed-loop bands

How to Buy

Anyone interested can purchase the Kanex GoPower Watch from the company's website for $99.95. Kanex also sells a line of other accessories, including a USB-C battery pack for the 12-inch MacBook, a Thunderbolt 3 adapter, and a Bluetooth Mac keyboard that can sync with up to four devices and includes Apple's long-gone numeric keypad.

Related Roundup: Apple Watch Series 7
Buyer's Guide: Apple Watch (Buy Now)
Related Forum: Apple Watch

Top Rated Comments

co.ag.2005 Avatar
66 months ago
pretty cool. but then I realize I can just use my 10,400 mAh USB battery pack ('https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00UBDI7EC/ref=oh_aui_search_detailpage?ie=UTF8&psc=1') and my extra Apple Watch cable ;)
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Kaibelf Avatar
66 months ago
Remember when you had to pay for [S]iOS[/S] iPhone OS updates?
And OSX, and iWork, etc. Apple doesn't charge for any of that anymore, but god forbid they don't give away everything or sell at the cost of the BOM. It's almost as if they are a business or something! Outrageous.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Kaibelf Avatar
67 months ago
For the cost, the Apple charger should have a battery. Can't understand why apple hasn't done that. Seems like a great use for their new conforming battery tech.
Another article, another opinion about how Apple should give away something for free that they currently don't and instead realize the difference as profit.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Mac 128 Avatar
66 months ago
Another article, another opinion about how Apple should give away something for free that they currently don't and instead realize the difference as profit.
Sure. Apple should have charged for the AirPods charging case too.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
macduke Avatar
66 months ago
Another article, another opinion about how Apple should give away something for free that they currently don't and instead realize the difference as profit.
Who said anything about giving it away for free? There's money to be had in volume by making the thing actually appealing to purchase. I had forgotten it even existed until this comment. It's basically their $29 2m cable with a plastic weighted disc around it that somehow makes it worth an extra $50, even though it doesn't look very appealing. I can't imagine they sell that many of them. It's better design if the weight was instead a battery, and brings a better value proposition to the table through better design. I mean, for crying out loud, their iPhone docks are solid aluminum anodized to match the device color, and feature audio pass-through to stereo audio jack, and they cost $30 less. The pricing of this item is not consistent with their other accessories, which are already priced towards the top end of the consumer electronics market. I get charging more for superior design, but there is little to be found in this particular accessory.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)
YegorH Avatar
66 months ago
A guy walks with two really heavy, 80lb suitcases. A passer by asks him what time it is. The guy puts down both suitcases, rolls up his sleeve, looks at his watch and heavily breathing tells the time. The other guy is astonished seeing he has a digital watch and asks what else his watch can do. After learning about all the features, he expresses his surprise that the battery must be very powerful and long lasting. The owner of the watch replies: "Well, now with these two bad boys added - pointing to his suitcases - I get a full 1 hour of usage."
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Related Stories

youtube apple tv

YouTube Discontinuing 3rd-Generation Apple TV App, AirPlay Still Available

Wednesday February 3, 2021 3:09 pm PST by
YouTube is planning to stop supporting its YouTube app on the third-generation Apple TV models, where YouTube has long been available as a channel option. A 9to5Mac reader received a message about the upcoming app discontinuation, which is set to take place in March.Starting early March, the YouTube app will no longer be available on Apple TV (3rd generation). You can still watch YouTube on...
iPhone 13 Dummy Thumbnail 2

Kuo: iPhone 13 to Feature LEO Satellite Communications to Make Calls and Texts Without Cellular Coverage

Sunday August 29, 2021 7:39 am PDT by
The iPhone 13 will feature low earth orbit (LEO) satellite communication connectivity to allow users to make calls and send messages in areas without 4G or 5G coverage, according to the reliable analyst Ming-Chi Kuo. In a note to investors, seen by MacRumors, Kuo explained that the iPhone 13 lineup will feature hardware that is able to connect to LEO satellites. If enabled with the relevant...
General Apps Messages

Android iMessage Competitor Puts Pressure on Apple

Friday July 30, 2021 3:15 am PDT by
Google and the three major U.S. carriers, including Verizon, AT&T, and T-Mobile, will all support a new communications protocol on Android smartphones starting in 2022, a move that puts pressure on Apple to adopt a new cross-platform messaging standard and may present a challenge to iMessage. Verizon recently announced that it is planning to adopt Messages by Google as its default messaging...
os x mountain lion macs 16x9 2

Apple Makes OS X Lion and Mountain Lion Free to Download

Wednesday June 30, 2021 12:19 pm PDT by
Apple recently dropped the $19.99 fee for OS X Lion and Mountain Lion, making the older Mac updates free to download, reports Macworld. Apple has kept OS X 10.7 Lion and OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion available for customers who have machines limited to the older software, but until recently, Apple was charging $19.99 to get download codes for the updates. As of last week, these updates no...
bluetti eb70 main

MacRumors Giveaway: Win a Bluetti EB70 Portable Power Station and 200W Solar Panel

Friday September 3, 2021 11:13 am PDT by
For this week's giveaway, we've teamed up with MAXOAK to offer MacRumors readers a chance to win a Bluetti portable power station and an accompanying solar panel. Bluetti makes a range of portable power station options that are useful for camping, emergencies, power outages, off-grid living, and similar situations. The Bluetti EB70 is a solid middle of the road option that offers 716Wh and...
apple privacy

Apple Publishes FAQ to Address Concerns About CSAM Detection and Messages Scanning

Monday August 9, 2021 1:50 am PDT by
Apple has published a FAQ titled "Expanded Protections for Children" which aims to allay users' privacy concerns about the new CSAM detection in iCloud Photos and communication safety for Messages features that the company announced last week. "Since we announced these features, many stakeholders including privacy organizations and child safety organizations have expressed their support of...
General Spotify Feature

Spotify Pauses Plans to Add AirPlay 2 Support to iOS App [Update: Spotify Clarifies]

Friday August 6, 2021 9:07 am PDT by
See update at bottom of article Spotify this week confirmed that its plans to add AirPlay 2 support to its iOS app have been placed on indefinite hiatus. In an online discussion forum post, a Spotify representative said the streaming music service had been working on supporting AirPlay 2, but the company has paused the efforts "for now" due to "audio driver compatibility issues." The...
iphone 13 teal with text

Apple Begins Preparation for iPhone 13 Production Ahead of Fall Launch

Monday June 28, 2021 3:29 am PDT by
We're just a few months away from when Apple is expected to reveal the 2021 iPhone, dubbed the "iPhone 13." In preparation for its launch, it has been pulling in shipments of different components needed to produce the new iPhones, according to a report from DigiTimes. In years past, Apple released its latest iPhone lineup, alongside a new Apple Watch, during a September event at Apple Park....
General Spotify Feature

Spotify Partners With Delta to Provide Free In-Flight Music and Podcasts Service

Thursday September 2, 2021 12:59 am PDT by
Spotify has announced a new partnership with Delta that will see the streaming service take over the "audio" section of Delta's in-flight seatback entertainment, making select playlists and podcasts freely available to all passengers. You are now free to roam about the cabin—and get the music and podcasts you love at 30,000 feet. Beginning today, we're taking off in a new partnership with...
iphone 12 colors 2021

iPhone 12 Colors: Deciding on The Right Color

Thursday November 5, 2020 8:35 am PST by
The iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro arrived in October 2020 in a range of color options, with entirely new hues available on both devices, as well as some popular classics. The 12 and 12 Pro have different color choices, so if you have your heart set on a particular shade, you might not be able to get your preferred model in that color. iPhone 12 mini and iPhone 12 The iPhone 12 mini and iPhone...