Apple’s latest iPhone battery cases add a camera button

They cost $129 and are on sale now.

If you own an iPhone 11 or 11 Pro, you know that it has pretty great battery life. There’s been a plethora of reviews that have proven that, and I haven’t heard of anyone begging for more juice throughout the day. That being said, for the past few years, Apple has done battery cases for its phones that add more power to your device, and in order to fall in line with tradition, it makes sense to see the company also introduce battery cases for the iPhone 11 series which it did yesterday.

The new cases all share the same price tag: $129. Apple says you can get up to 50 percent more usage out of your phone using the case, and the accessory should add some extra grip since it’s made of silicon. There’s also no bulky chin at the bottom, unlike the cases for the iPhone 7 and much like the cases for the iPhone XS.

But here’s the kicker: the cases don’t just add extra battery life to your phone. They also give you a dedicated camera button.

With such a strong focus on the camera system in the iPhone 11, there’s no doubt Apple wants to emphasize it every opportunity they can. So I guess they found out that by strapping a camera shutter to its first-party iPhone cases, they could remind everybody that, yes, they have a pretty stellar camera setup on their phones.

The way the button works is pretty straight-forward. You can tap it once to open the camera app, tap it again to take a photo, and long-press it to start recording video. And that’s about it. It’s a very simple, plain camera button that’s supposed to make using your iPhone to take a picture feel like you’re using a point-and-shooter.

One side note: you don’t need this case to get a physical camera button on your phone. Apple lets you use the volume buttons as shutter buttons when the camera app is open. Don’t spend $130 thinking you’ll feel like a real photographer with this case. The same functionality is available already on your phone, you just might not have known it.

The new cases go on sale this week at the Apple store. The cases for the iPhone 11, 11 Pro, and 11 Pro Max are available in black or white, while the two Pro models get a third finish: Pink Sand.

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