Review: Momax Mains Battery Charger
Here's a common scenario. You've acquired a spare battery for your smartphone, either by buying one on purpose or by inheriting one from another device. Yet, in order to charge each, you've got to power the device down and swap cells, effectively using the phone itself as the charger. If, like me, you juggle more than one phone and more than one battery for each, this can get very tiresome. Enter this latest mains battery charger from Mobile Fun, compatible with nearly every Nokia smartphone battery from the last few years and reviewed right here. Summary? It's a slam dunk.
Ostensibly compatible with just seven batteries, the "BP-4L, BL-5K, BL-4S, BL-4CT, BL-5CT, BL-5J and BL-4U", the charger actually works with a much wider range of Nokia batteries - as long as the width doesn't exceed that of the BP-4L (shown in situ below) and as long as the pin configuration is Nokia 2006-2010 standard, the battery should charge just fine - all the cells in my menagerie charged successfully.
Each battery just rests neatly in the alcove - prone to being kicked out of place by an errant dog or child, but provided you site it carefully then you shouldn't have a problem. An LED turns blue when charging's in progress. The second LED corresponds to the second charging station, the USB socket on the charger's side. Using this, you can either charge a device which doesn't use Nokia batteries or you could simply charge your main phone at the same time as its spare battery.
In terms of output, and this is possibly the only real caveat, we're definitely talking slow charging, not express, possibly to make sure that even the lowest specced batteries don't get over-cooked. The direct battery charging pins can source 250mA (at 4.2V), roughly the same as the Nokia Travel Charger that many of us have seen or used. At this current, a BP-4L will take well over five hours to charge fully, but then the whole idea of this accessory is that time isn't an issue - you're not standing around tutting because the charging process is tying up your phone as well. When a battery is fully charged, the LED turns green.
Interestingly, the USB socket can supply a higher 650mA at 5.2V, presumably to suit an actual device, which you might then need - i.e. this gadget is then acting as a simple mains-to-USB charging adapter. And I tested the charger with both in use at the same time - a BP-6MT battery and a Nokia N97 connected via microUSB (lead supplied) and this seemed to work OK too.
Now, I'm a bit of an edge case here - I have 5 or 6 spare batteries lying around for various Nokia phones and smartphones, and it's something of a revelation to have these charged unobtrusively in the corner without having to swap out the cells in the actual devices. But I'll bet your eyes lit up at the sight of this accessory too - the Momax Mains Battery Charger is currently for sale at £18, which represents good value for money, in my opinion.
Reviewed by Steve Litchfield at