Apple today introduced the new iPhone Smart Battery Case for the iPhone 6s and iPhone 6. Available in White or Charcoal Gray, the Smart Battery Case includes a built-in battery which will boost your iPhone’s battery life for talk time up to 25 hours and internet use up to 18 hours on LTE.
You charge the Smart Battery Case and your iPhone simultaneously and the amount of charge left in the case is displayed on your iPhone’s normal battery indicator.
Ignoring, for a moment, that this thing is downright hideous – it’s interesting that Apple has released this. The iPhone battery case market is pretty well covered and Apple Stores have been carrying the Mophie cases for years… so why now?
While Apple has mostly always produced its own cases and smart covers for iPhones and iPads, they have often been forerunner products to provide both an option for newly-released devices and a benchmark for what other case manufacturers should achieve in terms of style and quality1.
My theory is that Apple has been receiving a lot of negative feedback on the battery life of the iPhone 6/6s in stores, so much so that they felt it necessary to release their own battery case. It’s not unreasonable to assume that many Apple Store employees often have to recommend a third-party battery case to 6/6s customers reporting poor battery life, so Apple may likely be seeing an increasing need to have a first-party option that could be recommended first. Whether this is solely for profitiability, however, remains to be seen2.
Whatever the reason, releasing their own battery case for a device that is often derided for poor battery life seems almost an admission that maybe there is such a thing as too thin.