Apple Releases $129 Battery Cases for New iPhones — How Much More Juice Do You Get?

If you'd like to squeeze more battery life out of one of Apple's recently released iPhones, Apple has a solution for you. Simply squeeze your iPhone XS, XS Max or iPhone XR into one of the new Smart Battery Cases just announced by Apple.

Credit: Apple

(Image credit: Apple)

We first heard rumors about the cases — which all cost $129 no matter which phone they fit — back in December. As seen in that report, the power pack on the back of the Smart Battery Case is a little more streamlined than on the version first unveiled in late 2015 for the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus.

MORE: iPhone XR Battery Life: The Results Are In

This new cases promises a silicone exterior, available in either white or black, combined with a microfiber lining inside the case to keep your phone comfortable. The cases will work with Qi-certified chargers, Apple says, so you'll be able to charge them wirelessly. In fact, since you can charge the phone and the case at the same time, you'll never even need to remove your iPhone, though the case's elastomer hinge design is aimed to allow you to do so easily.

iPhone XS Smart Battery Case

Expect increased talk time of up to 33 hours with the iPhone XS Smart Battery Case, which Apple says is only compatible with the iPhone XS even though it's the same size as 2017's iPhone X. Apple claims you can also get up to 21 hours of internet use and 25 hours of video playback.

With the iPhone XS Max Smart Battery Case, you can expect up to 37 hours of additional talk time, 20 hours of internet use and 25 hours of video playback.

The iPhone XR Smart Battery Case promises an extra 39 hours of talk time, 22 hours of internet use and 27 hours of video playback on a charge.

iPhone XS Max Smart Battery Case

The iPhone XR already lasts a long time on a charge, holding out for 11 hours, 26 minutes on our battery test, which involves continuous web surfing over LTE until the phone runs out of juice. That's good enough to place the iPhone XR on our list of longest-lasting smartphones, so a Smart Battery Case could let you go even longer between charges. With battery test times of 9:41 and 10:38, respectively, the iPhone XS and XS Max might benefit from a case that adds a lot more battery life.

iPhone XR Smart Battery Case

Order one of the new battery cases now, and you won't have to wait long to slap it on your iPhone. Apple's online store promises deliver orders for almost every version of the case by the end of the week. The one exception: the white iPhone XR case, which lists a delivery date by the end of January as of this writing.

Philip Michaels

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.