Like others, I use my Nintendo Switch as a handheld device more than as a home console. I don’t spend a lot of time at home, and I don’t charge my Switch until it’s around 20%. Playing in short bursts whenever I’m out and about means that I don’t worry about charging my Switch until it’s low on battery. The Nyko Power Pak has ensured that those moments are few and far between.
Installation and Use
The Nyko Power Pak packaging includes the Power Pak itself and a USB C cable for charging. Installing the Power Pak is quite simple thanks to its removable top piece. All you do is unlock the top with the switches on the back of the Power Pak, and slide your Switch into place before securing the top piece back on. Once it’s secure, your Switch now has an added 5000 mAh to it. In order to charge the Switch with the Power Pak, you have to press a button on the back of the external battery that also illuminates the indicator lights to show you how much battery life you have left on the Power Pak. To turn off the Power Pak, you must hold the button until the lights turn off so that it stops charging the Switch. Charging the Power Pak itself is as simple as plugging in a USB C cable to its charging port, and watching until the 4 indicator lights fill up to tell you that it’s fully charged.
A Literal Extension of the Switch
I like the design of the Nyko Power Pak. It’s simple, low-key, and fits the overall look of the Nintendo Switch. The top part of the Power Pak has the appropriate cutouts so that you can access everything you need to from the power and volume buttons to the game card slot and headphone jack. The vents on the top and back of the Switch are given adequate room to breathe for the most part. The Power Pak also includes a better kickstand than the one on the Switch itself.
Without a doubt, the Power Pak allows you to use your Switch for longer periods of time. However, I am hesitant to post any exact numbers on playtimes because it varies on several factors such as what game was being played, brightness, and if online play was involved. When I tested the Power Pak by playing ARMS, I found that it took around 4 hours before the Power Pak was empty. When my brother was playing NBA 2K18, the Power Pak lasted for around 2 and a half hours before needing to be charged again. Overall though, I’m happy that at least the Switch will have its playtime extended by a few hours because of the Power Pak.
Some nice bonuses about the Power Pak are that it provides extra protection to your Switch because of its bulkiness. If you were to lay the Switch face down, it’s screen would not touch the surface because the Power Pak has raised bezels. The Power Pak completely covers the back of the Switch as well so any scratches or scuffs that might happen would just happen to the Power Pak instead.
The Nyko Power Pak has some problems though. For one, it feels cheap. It’s made of a soft touch plastic that smudges, scratches, and gets fingerprints on it quite easily. Clearing them away with a damp cloth is necessary if you want to keep the Power Pak looking nice. The other issue is that it makes the Switch feel a lot heavier. It makes sense that it would; the case is bulky and it’s carrying a 5000 mAh battery. But, this external battery is meant to be used in handheld mode. My arms and hands became tired quicker with the case on. The added bulk of the Power Pak also prevented me from storing the Switch into the official Nintendo Switch Carrying Case.
I love the fact that I can use my Switch for longer periods now without thinking about charging it. The Nyko Power Pak extends the battery life of the Switch by existing as an extension of the console itself. Even though it feels a bit cheap and the added weight can be a problem for some, the Nyko Power Pak is a good accessory for people who play often on the go.