Who Invented the Power Bank?


an older power bank model with its USB charging cable plugged into it

Power banks have been around for many years now and have turned into highly developed and technological power charging devices. I don’t know about you, but every time I am using one of my power banks, I start wondering who invented them and what the first power bank looked like. So I did some research on the topic and wrote this article.

The first-ever power bank was created by the Chinese electronics manufacturer Pisen back in 2004. It was referred to as a mini Power Bank or Power King and was a rather big and bulky portable charger that was able to charge various camera batteries and other electronic devices.

Continue to read this article if you want to find out more about the origins of the power bank and the company that invented it.

Who Made the First Power Bank?

The first power bank was created by the Chinese manufacturer Pisen Technology back in 2004.

Already in 2001, the company and its highly skilled engineers had started to work on a new kind of portable charging device and the very first design of what would later come to be the power bank was simply two AA batteries pieced together by a circuit.

Rumour has it that Pisen got the idea from a tech student who presented his battery gadget at the 2001 Las Vegas International Consumer Electronics Show, but there is no solid source that can confirm this.

It would take another 3 years and an actual request by a Chinese Antarctic Expedition team for a portable charger that could charge the crew’s camera batteries and cell phones before the first real power bank, called Power King, would be created.

The Power King, or mini Power Bank, was a portable charger that was able to charge various electronic devices.

The gadget became an instant hit as it sold many units and received great appreciation from consumers all over the world. It was the dawn of the power bank!

In 2005, Pisen produced a new version of the Power King that came with a more sophisticated charging indicator to display the current quantity of battery power being charged. Also, this new model had a much thinner design which made it more portable and convenient to carry around.

Today, Pisen Technology goes by the name Anker Technology, which is the global leader in charging technology and an internationally renowned enterprise. Millions of people that are all around the world are using Anker power banks, as they are very reliable, high-quality gadgets that come at a very decent price.

How Did the First Power Bank Work?

The original Pisen power bank already had a USB output port with two independent charging circuits that were able to charge different types of electronic devices. It was the predecessor of modern power banks with a DC output port.

The Power King was the very first power bank that had its own internal power storage and that was able to charge other devices from its own battery.

And even though the invention of the power bank only happened roughly two decades ago, it was a really revolutionizing and forward technology at the time.

What Did the First Power Bank Look Like?

The first model of the Power King was a very heavy, inconvenient, and bulky-looking charging device that weighed a little over 2 pounds. It kind of looked like a chunky small radio device with a USB output.

However, the second version already had a much thinner design which made it more portable and convenient to carry around.

That model “only” weighed 1 pound, which was a huge improvement at the time, given the technological know-how and the designs available.

The dimensions of this second-generation power bank were as follows: 174 mm x 68 mm x 37 mm (6.85 inches x 2.67 inches x 1.45 inches). Those power bank dimensions became the industry standard for many years and models to come.

Did you know that? The first power banks were mostly used by professional photographers who needed a portable charging device for their cameras/flashlights/phone batteries etc.

Power Banks Then and Now

Today, there are many different types of power banks available that serve different purposes and have different features, but all of them are used for recharging portable electronic devices such as phones, tablets, GPS devices, wearable devices, etc.

The most common materials used in the production of power banks are plastic or aluminum alloys which makes them a lot lighter than their predecessors.

Other major differences between power banks then and now are both weight and dimensions. Nowadays, power banks are extremely small and compact and can weigh as little as 120g (4 ounces) and measure a mere 100mm x 50mm x 30mm (4 inches x 2 inches x 1.3 inches).

And then there is the difference in charging capacity. The first power banks had a very short battery life and a charging capacity below 1000 mah.

Today, power banks are highly technological and evolved gadgets with long battery life and charging capacities that can exceed 20000 mah. And that’s only the beginning. In the near future, these numbers will be dwarfed by even more sophisticated models and technologies, as the industry around lithium batteries is developing at an ever-faster rate.

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