Solar chargers try to slim down but stay juiced

Solar Technology develops portable charger that it says will provide 44 hours for mobile phones and 18 hours for iPods.

Solar Technology

There was a time not long ago that solar chargers looked about as portable as the brick phones that came out when Duran Duran was touring the first time around--which kind of defeated the purpose , considering that these were meant to go with mobile phones and other handheld devices. Today, however, some of them are small enough to use as a keychain or even a fashion accessory .

Yet power capacities of many tiny chargers remain an issue (not to mention that they often come from generic brands of dubious origin). So U.K.-based Solar Technology has tried to split the difference by developing a new charger that's a little larger than an iPhone but claims to provide up to 44 hours of juice for a mobile phone, 22 hours for a PDA, 18 hours for an iPod, and 2.5 hours for a PSP. The "Freeloader 8.0" comes with 11 adapters, but you'll have to check to see if your devices are on the list. And don't worry, the most urgent question is addressed: Yes, it's available in hot pink.

About the author

    Mike Yamamoto is an executive editor for CNET News.com.

     

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