Apple Releases $99 iPhone 6s Battery Case, Promises 25-Hour Runtime

Feeling disappointed with the battery life of your iPhone 6s or iPhone 6 smartphone? One solution is to buy a case with an integrated battery. There's no shortage of options from third-party accessory makers, and if you listen closely, you can hear their collective groan as Apple's enters the fray with its own battery case option.

Apple's new Smart Battery Case comes in Charcoal Gray or White. It's made of pliable silicone and has a soft microfiber lining on the inside to protect your iPhone. Apple claims installation is easy-cheesy thanks to a soft elastomer hinge design that won't give you fits when you put the case on or take it off.

Apple Smart Battery Case

If you've ever shopped around for a third-party battery case, then you know you're typically looking at around $20 to $40, depending on the brand, battery capacity, and other features. At $99, Apple's Smart Battery Case is predictably more expensive than the bulk of options out there, though to  be fair, the price premium isn't strictly what some people refer to as an Apple tax.

For one, the case supports Lightning accessories. It also works with the iPhone Lightning Dock, but the biggest advantage of Apple's Smart Battery Case is that it taps into iOS in ways that other cases can't.

Apple Smart Battery Case White

When plugged in, iOS will display separate battery charger indicators for the case and iPhone. Third-party case makers can offer similar functionality through a separate app, but not on the lockscreen the way Apple's case does. It's a small convenience, but a convenience all the same.

Apple isn't saying what capacity battery is inside its case, only that it increases talk time up to 25 hours, Internet use by up to 18 hours on LTE, and video playback by up to 20 hours. Not bad, if you can stomach the price premium and the unsightly bulge on the case's backside.