I recently received a new Mophie Juice Pack Air to review in comparison with the old Mophie Juice Pack. There were quite a few new perks that will easily have me switching from the Juice Pack to the Air.

     When I reviewed the old Mophie Juice Pack I found that it would keep the iPhone 3G at a constant 100% charge for 9 hours before the iPhone’s battery kicked in. This was fairly useful for everyday activities while you are away at work or on a long trip and want to use your phone for more than just calls.

     With the Mophie Juice Pack Air it proved to be a little more useful and efficient than the Mophie Juice Pack. The Juice Pack boasted a high 1800 mAh capacity while the Air only had a capacity of 1200 mAh. Even though the Juice Pack is said to have a greater capacity I found that with the Air’s new feature of a standby switch proved to be much more efficient. Unlike the Juice Pack, the Air has a new switch that can turn off the constant drain of the battery in the pack so that it isn’t working so hard at keeping the iPhone at full strength. Due to this reason I was able to drain the iPhone down to almost nothing and it was able to fully recharge on the Air’s power.

     Another great reason to get the Air instead of the Juice Pack is due to the new design, it is actually a full case versus just a sleeve of sorts like the original. This way it will make sure the pack stays connected to your device easier as well as make the look of it much more complete. However like the original pack it has a very tight fit. I have an invisishield on my iPhone 3GS and tried to insert it into the Air and had a world of trouble. Not to mention when I removed the phone there was severe damage to the invisishield, as well as I literally had to pry it out with a knife. So if you have an invisishield or another type of outer protective shield you might want to steer clear of this case.

     A few other nice features that it had in common with the original Juice Pack was the 4 LED indicator on the back as well as the ability to sync without removal of the case. The bright blue LEDs on the back of the case indicate how much charge was left in the Air’s battery. Also while the case was plugged into your laptop via the included USB cable, your PC or Mac will recognize it and mount it in the same fashion as any Apple product.

     Now the only negative thing I could find about the case, in compairison with the Juice Pack, is the texture of the case. They have now conformed to the general design of other cases and made the plastic very smooth and with a look and feel much like that of the iPhone itself. The original Juice Pack design had a textured more rubberized feel that made it easier to stick in your hand and that was one of the main things I loved about it. But I have heard many people complain that they liked the shiny exterior of the iPhone versus the rubberized feel of the Juice Pack. So I assume it really depends on the person.

     Overall I would much rather have the Mophie Juice Pack Air versus the Juice Pack even if it came onto the court a little late. There were a few battery cases prior to their launch but Mophie made no delay in catching up.  The price of $79.95 isn’t much lower than the Juice Packs $99.95, but the Air’s battery proves to be much better than that of the Juice Pack. With that alone the price tag of $99.95 would have been appropriate but the fact that it is $20 cheaper makes it an obvious buy.