The Nintendo Switch is a great travel companion, but with a battery that can tap out after as little as four hours of gameplay, it might not be with you all the way. The console sometimes needs a helping hand, and if you’ve got room for a backup battery in your luggage, the Enerjoy looks like it will go above and beyond the call of duty when you find yourself away from a power outlet.
The Switch can be charged from the same battery you use to keep your smartphone and tablet topped up while traveling, as long as it has enough speed, capacity, and you don’t forget a USB-C cable. The Switch does introduce some charging complications when traveling, specifically when it comes to its removable wireless controllers. The Joy-Cons automatically charge while attached to the console, but only two at a time. If you travel with four Joy-Cons, the maximum number that can be connected to the Switch for games like Mario Kart 8 Deluxe and Super Mario Party, you’re going to have to do some juggling to keep them all powered up, as they can’t be individually charged with a cable.
The Enerjoy looks like it solves a few problems when hitting the road with a fully accessorized Switch. First and foremost it connects to the Switch itself using an adjustable clamp that grips the console from behind while making a physical connection to its USB-C port on the bottom. The Enerjoy, which is available with a 5,000 mAh battery or a 10,000 mAh battery with the Pro option, magnetically attaches to this clamp and hangs off the back of the Switch, adding anywhere from nine to 18 extra hours of gameplay, depending on which option you choose.
The Enerjoy can also be used as a replacement for the Joy-Con grip accessory that’s included with the console for turning the Joy-Cons into a more traditional-style controller, which few people bother to pack when they hit the road. Unlike the bundled grip, the Enerjoy will also charge two Joy-Cons while they’re attached.
Finally, the Enerjoy battery can also be used as a replacement for the Nintendo Joy-Con charging dock, charging four Joy-Con controllers at the same time by slotting their bottom edges into four ports on the battery. The Joy-Cons look a little more precarious with this setup, but it seems like a minor trade-off given the portability gains here.
Unfortunately, the creators of the Enerjoy didn’t find a way to add dock connectivity to the multi-function charger as well, allowing it to be used as a way to connect the Switch to TVs over HDMI without requiring separate docking hardware. The other downside is that you can’t buy the Enerjoy just yet as it’s currently being crowdfunded through Kickstarter.
It’s already surpassed its almost $20,000 funding goal, and while you can pre-order the 5,000 mAh option with a $37 pledge or the 10,000 mAh with a $45 pledge, delivery isn’t expected until January of next year, and that’s assuming its creators don’t run into any unexpected problems or delays. There’s always risk involved when backing crowdfunded products, and even more risk when it’s complicated electronics. Although Remotto does have lots of experience in this field and has successfully delivered other products to consumers, it’s always a case of buyer beware with crowdfunded products.