Why does Steppenwolf’s “Born to be Wild” buzz through my head when I look at the Griffin PowerDock 5? Because the five-port docking station reminds me of one of those old roadside gas stations out on the desert highway.
Cables: I love what they do – keeping my beloved gadgets juiced and full of delicious data – but — unlike a playful kitten — I hate their tangled mess. Perhaps the perfect charger cable is here at last though: It’s the curly phone-style Lightning cable from Japanese company Sanwa.
Amen! A charging case designed for the iPhone 5. Mophie’s new Juice Pack Helium ($79) is one of the first of its kind that work with longer iDevice, so if you find your i5’s often running in the red battery zone by noon each day, read on for the full review. This sleek and slim charging case might just be exactly what you need.
You know about Magnetyze, right? It’s a system that lets you charge an iPhone 4/S or Galaxy S3 without the need for a cord. Pop your iPhone into the provided case, then drop the case on the magnetic charging base and your iPhone will charge (and sync) — it works kind of like the MagSafe power adapter on a MacBook. It’s really cool on the S3, because the Magnetyze case replaces the S3’s original back, so there’s almost zero extra bulk. Neat.
LAS VEGAS, CES 2013 – I always pack two cases when I’m about to embark on heavy travel with my iPhone: a battery case and my trusty Incipio Feather Ultralight case. I realize toting extra juice is a necessity I have to live with, but I haven’t yet found a serious battery case with dimensions I can live with — I simply hate the bulkiness. This means I’m often stuck balancing my need for my juice with my want for less bulk by constantly swapping cases, and frankly, it’s a pain in the ass.
Apple released its iOS 6.0.2 update over-the-air to select devices earlier this week, promising a fix for a frustrating bug that could impact Wi-Fi performance. However, the update comes with a nasty problem of its own. There are reports that it has greatly reduced battery life on the iPhone 5 and the iPad mini — even when the devices go unused for long periods of time.
Plug in your iPhone or iPad and charge it up, and you’ll notice that while the first 80% or so will go by pretty fast, they actually kind of suck at charging up that last 20%, taking a lot more time to do so than it feels like they should.
There’s a reason for this. Charging batteries up to “full” is a complicated process. There’s no real way to tell if a battery is completely “full” so all you can do is measure the voltage, which (and this is a vast simplification) tells you how much resistance is being met when you try to put more electricity into the battery.
That’s why it takes so long for an iPhone to charge that last 20%. It charges full blast until it measures a certain voltage, then goes into what’s called “trickle mode” to slowly allow small sips of electricity into the battery until it thinks, based upon some software calculations, that the battery is more or less full. But a new algotihm could make the time it takes to charge your iPhone or iPad go by a lot faster.
It used to be that if your phone ran out of juice, you could just pop into the nearest bar or cafe and ask “Do you have a Nokia charger?”, and the waitron would hand you one of the needle-tipped jacks from some cupboard or drawer.
Now, things have moved on. Battery life is measured in hours, not days, and Nokia is going the way of RIM and if a bar has an iPhone charger, it’s likely the bartender is using it to charge his own iPhone.
What you need is a charger that is always with you. What you need is the Case:Lynk.
If you want to power your bike’s lights and charge your iPhone as you pedal, you should have specced a dynamo hub when you got the wheels built. But either you were too cheap (like me) or couldn’t see the point. Don’t worry! There’s hope for both of us in the form or the ECOXPOWER generator, an aftermarket power and lighting system for your bike.