I live in a constant state of fear that my iPhone will run out of juice. I keep charging cables all over my house, I always scan cafes and airport lounges for available power outlets, and I almost never leave the house without a spare Mophie.
Yes, I’ve read all the tips on conserving smartphone battery life, but I find few of them to be that sustainable if you really want to use your the device like it’s supposed to be used. But the need to constantly carry spare batteries is a real pain — just check my busted pockets.
Here’s an idea: How about putting a battery in something I’m carrying around anyway. That’s exactly the idea behind the Nomad Leather Wallet for iPhone, which hides a decent-size battery, complete with Lightning cable, within a chic leather wallet.
The designers of the Nomad lent me one of their battery-hiding wallets, and I’ve been using it for the past week. The wallet I have is the larger bifold style, which costs $149.95 and has slots for six cards as well as cash. Nomad also makes a smaller “Slim” version for $119.95. Both are genuine leather and contain a 2,400 milliamp-hour (mAh) battery. (By comparison, Apple’s Smart Battery Case has 1,877 mAh.) There is no microUSB version of the wallet, at least not yet.
As a wallet, the larger Nomad is on the big side for my taste (I’m probably a target customer for the Slim), but it’s a fine piece of hide, tan in color, smooth in texture and precise in craftsmanship. The battery itself is basically the rod the wallet folds around. It doesn’t add much weight, and unless you point it out to someone, they probably wouldn’t notice (thought they might wonder what the microUSB port and tiny button are for). The Lightning cable tucks neatly between the card slots.
If I’m being honest there’s not much to review here. The wallet is a nice wallet. It’s probably more than most would pay for one, but the it’s unquestionably stylish. And the battery has enough juice to charge your iPhone 6S fully (and your iPhone 6S Plus by about 60%), and it takes about two hours to fully do its thing.
But the details and functionality of the Nomad wallet don’t really capture what it offers: peace of mind. Having a robust battery on you at all times means using your phone while out and about isn’t a constant game of dimming the screen and toggling Low Power Mode. That goes double for iPhone 6 users like myself, since we have smaller batteries than Plusers and those batteries are mostly getting old and less able to hold a charge. For us, the Nomad is seriously a weight lifted — literally and figuratively.