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Camera Accessories

Mota Wireless Charger for GoPro simplifies powering up

This Kickstarter project lets you wirelessly charge your Hero3 or Hero4 without removing the housing or using a special battery -- and you won't even need an outlet to do it.

Mota

If you're a GoPro camera user, you know charging up your battery can be an all-too-frequent occurrence. You also know that it's a bit of a hassle, since you typically have to remove it from a housing of some sort to get the battery out or plug the camera in.

The Mota Wireless Charger for GoPro gets around at least part of this by letting you just mount the camera -- housing and all -- on to a dock to charge up without the need for a special battery. To get this done, this Kickstarter project (from the same team that's bringing us the Smartring wearable) is basically made up of two pieces: the dock and an adapter.

The dock, or wireless power bank, is essentially a 6,000mAh battery with two slots in the top to fit the GoPro housing mount. A small receiver piece replaces the camera's port cover, plugging into the Mini-USB port and extending down and wrapping around, covering the bottom of the camera.

Once you attach the receiver, Mota says you can put the camera back in the housing and charge away just by mounting the camera. There's also a spot on top for charging a second GoPro Hero4 battery and a full-size USB port on the side for charging other devices.

The promotional video for the Kickstarter is a little misleading, as this won't solve the problem of needing to open the housing and physically swap the battery if you need to keep shooting once your battery dies. Yes, you can leave it in the housing, but Mota currently estimates a full wireless charge at 3.5 to 4 hours to go from empty to 100 percent. It's working to shorten that to 2 to 2.5 hours.

Having a battery pack for your GoPro would be cool though -- at least you can charge in between shoots to top off your battery (or your phone or wireless remote, or whatever). Just don't expect an instant charge.

Mota will be at CES 2015 with its prototype of the charger (and the Smartring), so I'm hoping to get a good look at this thing before its projected ship date in April/May 2015. You can get in on the action for an early bird pledge of $55 (which converts to approximately £35 or AU$70).