There have been reports of BlackBerry Bold 9900 and 9930 devices failing to power on after being left to charge all night. Late Friday evening, RIM confirmed the issue by saying a “limited number of customers have reported an issue where their device does not power on.” A RIM spokesperson said the company is “actively working on a software update to resolve this issue.” There’s no word on how many devices are failing, but there seems to be quite a few of them as the company’s support board is filling up with complaints.
In a blog post today, ST-Ericsson announced a new device that aims to keep your smartphone and tablet off the charger and in your hands for longer periods of time. Simply called the PM2300, the power product promises to charge your device’s standard, Li-Ion battery in half the time it takes current charging mechanisms. The PM2300,which is expected to be available this fall, also uses fewer PCB (printed circuit board) materials. ST-Ericsson lists the device’s selling points as:
- Charges the battery at 3A instead of 1.5A max
- Halves the battery charging time: less than 3h for a 25Ah battery
- Charge even during intensive use cases: typical intensive use cases consume around 1A
If we can’t have longer lasting batteries, an improved charger that translates into less time tethered to the wall-outlet will have to do. More →
We met up with LG on Tuesday to check out its inductive Wireless Charging Pad, which it hopes will compete against competitors like Powermat. During our hands-on, we weren’t able to test the device — it seems someone forgot to charge the charger — but we were able to get a feel for its size, weight and some of its features. The Wireless Charging Pad has a power indicator that alerts you just how much power is left, and LG says it takes about two hours to charge itself up fully. All you have to do once it’s juiced up is pop a special back onto your smartphone and drop it onto the charging pad. In our eyes, the Wireless Charging Pad wasn’t a whole lot different than the Powermat; it’s light in the hand and can easily be packed in a briefcase, backpack or even a Florida tourist-friendly oversized fanny pack. LG hasn’t said which of its phones the Wireless Charging Pad will be compatible with just yet, but we think it’s a little counter intuitive for LG to make it only compatible with LG phones. Don’t forget to check out our photo gallery below!
The gang over at mophie, a company that makes a variety of power products for mobile devices, was kind enough to loan us a juice pack air for the iPhone 4. For those unfamiliar, the juice pack is a slide-on case that packs an extra 1500mAh battery for those times when power is at a premium. Although the case does add a fair amount of weight and depth to your iPhone, it also nearly doubles the battery life. We took the case with us when traveling to several events — where we were using our jailbroken iPhone 4 to tether via Wi-Fi — and the amount of time the juice air pack allowed us to use our handset without the need for a wall outlet was truly impressive. When the case is fully charged, activating its battery can almost completely replenish the battery of your iPhone 4. This allows you to use your device until the iPhone 4’s original charge is spent and for two hours while the case recharges the iPhone. Once the case is out of juice, your iPhone is left with somewhere between 80% and 90% of its reserve and you’re ready to rock and roll again.
Yesterday, mophie announced that the juice pack air will be available in two new colors — red and white (insert white iPhone 4 joke here) — and the case retails for $79.95. The company also makes several non-case, universal juice packs with a standard USB connection for other power-hungry devices. If you’re looking for a gift for a gadget-geek this holiday season, you might want to consider a mophie power pack. More →
According to a recent J.D. Power and Associates survey of smartphone users, Apple, for the fourth consecutive time, ranks highest in customer satisfaction. The smartphone survey uses the following weighted categories to calculate a winner: operation (26%), operating system (24%), physical design (23%), features (19%), and battery function (8%). Apple ended up with a score of 800 out of a possible 1,000. Following hot on the heels of the iPhone maker was Motorola (791) and HTC (781). J.D. Power reports that the average score for a smartphone was 764; unsurprisingly, Nokia was ranked last in U.S. smartphone satisfaction with a score of 711. Other smartphone notables include, Research In Motion (737), Samsung (735), and Palm (726). In Samsung’s defense, the study was conducted from January of 2010 to June of 2010, before the company had
the Galaxy S a serious smartphone in the market. Hit the read link for the full report. More →
Last Throwback Thursday, we covered the NES Zapper; a well known and respected Nintendo accessory. This week, we are going to go a little bit more obscure… with the Power Glove. The Power Glove was an accessory for the Nintendo Entertainment System that never really took off. Made in 1989 by U.S. toy company Mattel, the Glove was a wearable NES controller that was meant to track the movements of your hand in order to control gameplay. While we never owned a Power Glove ourselves (a little too rich for our 7 year-old blood), we do remember it making a cameo in the 1989 film The Wizard. One of the more memorable movie lines from a 12-year old dweeb with teased hair was: “I love the power glove. It’s so bad.” Oh, and how bad it was. There were only two, count em’ two, titles released with specific Power Glove functionality; although you could technically use any game by entering codes on the gloves keypad. While sales of the wearable controller were — by all accounts — an unmitigated disaster, duality can be seen between the Glove and the current technology used in the Nintendo Wii’s Wiimote. How about it? Anyone have a rich uncle that gifted you a Power Glove? Oh, and we’ve got that awesomely bad clip from The Wizard ready for you after the bounce. More →
Apple announced last week via a support bulletin that it is replacing defective Time Capsules manufactured between February 2008 and June 2008. The defective units are plagued by a power problem that causes the unit to either not power on or power off unexpectedly. If you experience this problem, contact Apple, an authorized service center, or setup an appointment at your local genius bar to arrange for a repair or a replacement. Good news for those who already paid for a repair; Apple is going to issue a refund for the complete cost of the repair service. Hit the link for the contact information, serial numbers of affected units, and more on Apple’s support site.
New cable technology on the horizon may be the closest thing to the Holy Grail of cabling; by offering a single cable replacement for your power cable, ethernet cable and HDMI cable. Dubbed HDBaseT, the new technology was co-developed over the past six months by LG, Samsung, Sony Pictures, and Valens Semiconductor. HDBaseT uses a single RJ45 cable to carry audio, HD video, ethernet, and even a 100 watts of power to a device. Unlike its HDMI counterpart, which is limited to approximately 15 meters in length, HDBaseT supports cables up to 100 meters long. If the technology catches on, we could see devices with HDBaseT support by the end of the year and wide-scale adoption in 2011. More →
Here at BGR, we’ve learned several truths over the years: What happens in Vegas does not always stay in Vegas, you really shouldn’t eat yellow snow and most importantly, there is no such thing as a phone with a big enough battery. Discounting those first two for the time being, we’re long-time Proporta portable battery users as having that extra 3400 mAh of juice in reserve can be a life saver. Last month however, we were made aware of an alternative option from London-based Devotec Industries and our interest was immediately piqued. While Devotec’s offering holds 47% less juice than our Proporta battery, we couldn’t help but get reeled in by a key feature that no other portable charger we’ve come across in the sub-$40 price range can tout — solar. Needless to say we scooped up a handful of them and went to town. Hit the jump to read our impressions of the Devotec Solar Charger after a few weeks of abuse from the BGR staff.
In a proposal that sounds like it is right out of Star Trek, Intel said on Friday that it is researching the potential use of free energy as a mobile power source. Intel is developing tiny sensors that can harvest ambient forms of energy, including body heat, sunlight and radiation. Movement, like that of moving a trackball or a scroll wheel, could even be used to provide small amounts of power to a mobile device. All you extreme BlackBerry users may never have to plug in your phone again! The research is still at the initial stage with Intel focusing on the development of the technology behind the sensors. It has already designed a self-charging neural implant that can send data about body systems via a wireless connection so Intel has made some progress in this area. Even though it is still in its infancy, you can’t help but think about the broader, long term applications. Imagine a world where you go indefinitely without having to charge your cell phone, bluetooth headset, or MP3 player. That is definitely a world in which we want to live!