Apple's latest iPhones last pretty long on a charge, with both the iPhone 11 Pro Max and iPhone 11 landing on our list of the longest-lasting smartphones. But a smartphone case with a battery attached can help your phone go even longer between charges, and Apple just updated its line of battery cases for the iPhone 11 family.
The latest Smart Battery Case from Apple — available for $129 for the iPhone 11, iPhone 11 Pro and iPhone 11 Pro Max — will look familiar to anyone who's seen past battery cases developed by the company. As before, the new Smart Battery Case has a silicone exterior and a soft microfiber lining, so you get protection on top of the added battery life. The case adds a little bit of bulge to the back of your iPhone, and there's a cutout for the rear-facing camera — whether that's the two rear lenses on the iPhone 11 or the trio of cameras on the back of the Pro models.
Speaking of cameras, the iPhone 11 Smart Battery Case introduces a new feature related to photography. There's now a dedicated camera button on the case that will launch the Camera app when pressed. Apple says a quick press of the button snaps a photo while a longer press will switch over to video using the camera's QuickTake feature.
Otherwise, the Smart Battery Case should perform as previous models. It's Qi-compatible so you can charge the case wirelessly, and you're able to charge both your iPhone and the case at the same time.
Apple's promising that the battery life on your iPhone will be extended by 50% when its inside one of the company's Smart Battery Cases. That could be quite a boost for the iPhone 11 Pro Max, which lasted 11 hours, 54 minutes on our battery test where we have the phone surf the web continuously over LTE until it runs out of power. The iPhone 11 fared well on that test, too, lasting 11 hours, 16 minutes. The iPhone 11 Pro, with its smaller battery, lasted 10 hours, 24 minutes, which is just above average for smartphones.
The iPhone Smart Battery Case is available in black, white and pink sand colors.
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Philip Michaels is a Managing Editor at Tom's Guide. He's been covering personal technology since 1999 and was in the building when Steve Jobs showed off the iPhone for the first time. He's been evaluating smartphones since that first iPhone debuted in 2007, and he's been following phone carriers and smartphone plans since 2015. He has strong opinions about Apple, the Oakland Athletics, old movies and proper butchery techniques. Follow him at @PhilipMichaels.