I am trying to build a portable device using the Pi Zero W and some 5V sensors. For the power supply I thought about a power bank meant for charging phones. The problem is that to power the device off, I need to add a NC switch between the battery and load (when held down it simulates the phone being disconnected, thus shutting off the charger until its ON button is pressed again). Another problem is the risk of the user unsafely shutting down the Pi.

So I was wondering what kind of assembled battery charging /management PCBs are available for my application? The PiJuice seemed possible, but is out of stock.

In summary the requirements are: 1. Boost to 5V 2. Switch to USB power when plugged in 3. A on-off switch + safe shut off 4. Preferably for 10000 mAh 3.7V LiPo battery

Does this even exist?

Many thanks, Ben

2 Answers 2


I have been trying trying these 2 options as an alternative to the PiJuice but both have missing features:

  • MoPi (can't charge the batteries while plugged in to the wall)

  • UPS PIco (doesn't have an on/off switch)

In bothe cases I have experienced problems with batteries discharging faster than they should. To be noted than neither of these 2 boards include a RTC. I don't know of any solution that have all the features you are looking for, and still looking for one myself.

  • Hi Clementine, the UPS PIco looks good as PiMaster also suggested. I can live with connecting my own on/off switch. I was just wondering if you could just hook up any 3.7V LiPo battery to it? Or do I have to buy theirs specifically. Thanks, Ben
    – Ben
    Commented Mar 25, 2017 at 3:46
  • I have tried buying other batteries than the one provided, but they have not lasted long (flat after 1-2 weeks of use). At the time I was using 4 UPS Pico, and got the same problem 4 times. I think it needs a special calibration if you want to use another battery. I gave up before this. The good thing is that they are normally very responsive. Commented Mar 25, 2017 at 20:45

The UPS PIco HV3.0 has hardware RTC with battery back up, and also an FSSD switch, which for a battery-powered application acts as an on/off switch. In addition, in UPS PIco HV3.0 Plus, the same button also cuts cable power.

  • 1
    This looks like a reasonable enough answer, and a pretty decent product. It does read an awful lot like you're affiliated with the distributor/manufacturer. That's not necessarily a problem, but we do require that you disclose any affiliation in the text of your answer to allow our users to identify self-promotion and make informed judgements on potential sources of bias.
    – goobering
    Commented Mar 25, 2017 at 10:22

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