Rating: Top model may give you an extra five hours talktime
Given the massive interest in our previous story about recharging your portable devices by pedalling (see here), we thought that the latest news from power specialist, Duracell, was interesting. The company has streamlined its range of portable USB chargers down from three devices to two. The new kid on the block is Duracell’s 5-hour Portable Charger which as the name implies should provide up to 5 hours extra talktime for a smartphone or a wireless PDA/tablet. Better still it can charge two devices simultaneously via a USB cable. There’s also a 3-hour version formerly known as the ‘Instant Charger’. Both devices are due to go on sale on Amazon UK from any day now.The makers claim the chargers are compatible with smartphones or device that features either a micro- or mini-USB socket.
Given that a GSMA initiative persuaded all the major smartphone manufacturers (except for Apple) to standardise on the micro-USB socket, GoMo News estimates that this covers most smartphones made in the last two years.
The products come with a Micro-USB cable which converts to a micro-USB tip over from a mini-USB tip.
That cable is very useful if you already have an old mini-USB 9V car lighter socket power adapter (although they only cost about £1).
Here’s the clever bit. These portable chargers contain rechargeable batteries themselves. So you charge them up before you leave for that music festival (i.e. WOMAD).
That’s a bit more eco-friendly than using a charger with disposable batteries.
How do you know how much juice you have left in the charger? Well the 5-hour version features a power-check button to provide an indication.
The company says the 5-hour charger should cost around £40 when it finally goes on sale.
The only problem is that there’s no obvious way of testing if you really do get five hours of extra usage.
Is anybody out there testing these clever blighters because we’d like to hear from you?