Solar charger for cell phones or iPods

Tech Culture

Tired of being tethered to a power outlet? Let the sun shine in, says Dutch firm Soldius.

The company out of Apeldoorn, Holland, has developed a consumer-use solar charger for mobile devices such as Apple's iPod, Research In Motion's BlackBerry or cell phones from Nokia, Motorola and others.

the Soldius1 solar recharge system
Credit: Soldius

The 5-inch by 3-inch device known as Soldius1 converts solar energy into 6.58 volts at a maximum of 320 milliamperes of power after only about three hours in direct sunlight.

Battery life varies depending on the device, but you can keep it hooked up while in use, the company said.

The charging process starts after 30 seconds, the company said. If the charging process is interrupted, wait 30 seconds and the procedure will automatically restart.

As for wear and tear, as long as you don't dunk it in your bathtub, the solar charger is good for 90,000 charges. That equals five charges a day, 365 days a year, for 49 years, the company claims.

Soldius' internal technology is called Maximum Solar Power Tracking, or MSPT, and the company is working on for laptops, cameras and other portable digital devices..

The universal solar charger kit for iPod and cell phones retails for $109.99 and comes with the solar pad, a mini USB cable, two interchangeable iPod adapters compatible with the iPod, iPod Nano, iPod Mini and iPod Shuffle, as well as five interchangeable mobile phone adapters.

An iPod-only kit retails for $99.99. The cell-phone-compatible kit sells for $89.99.

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