It was just a few weeks ago I told you about the Charged-Card, a wallet-friendly battery pack designed to provide emergency power for your smartphone.
Pretty cool, yes, but a little costly at the expected retail price of $39.99 (early backers can still get in for $30), and a little limited with just one connector: Apple 30-pin, Apple Lightning, or Micro-USB.
Unfortunately for the Charged-Card folks, there's already a better product in the works: the Jumper Card, which does more for less.
Update:Shortly after this post went live, the Jumper Card disappeared from Indiegogo, and e-mails to the developer have gone unanswered. If you're still interested in the product, check out the very similar Charged-Card.
Physically these two gizmos are just about identical. The Jumper Card is barely larger than a credit card, but unsurprisingly it's a bit thicker at about a quarter-inch.
Inside, there's a 480mAh rechargeable battery (the Charged-Card's is 400mAh) that's good for about 60 extra minutes of talk time, according to the developer. Obviously this isn't meant to fully recharge your phone, but rather to give you some extra juice when you're between outlets.
Perhaps the biggest difference is the Jumper Card's embedded cable, which incorporates all three of the aforementioned connectors: Apple 30-pin, Apple Lightning, and Micro-USB. That's a pretty big convenience add-on, and great for those times when you need to help out a power-starved friend or family member who has different hardware than you.
As with the Charged-Card, there's also an embedded USB cord that charges the Jumper's own battery and allows for syncing. And as with the Charged-Card, there's a built-in LED flashlight.
I was able to test a Jumper Card prototype, and although it boosted my phone's overall charge by only about 15 percent, I didn't really expect more. It's an emergency charger, plain and simple, one that can squeeze into a wallet if necessary.
If you're lucky, you may be able to snag one for just $19. Once those are sold, the next backer level is $25. The developer told me he expects $25 to be the price of the Jumper Card once it goes into production -- assuming the Indiegogo project hits its $10,000 target. Delivery is slated for April.
I think $25 is a reasonable price for a device as handy and versatile as this one. Your thoughts?