New Portable Battery Packs Give Gadgets, Laptops, Macs Extra Life
Back in 2007, I was at an Intel Developer Forum event in Beijing, China, and one of the sessions was on battery technologies powering today’s digital devices. A statement was made that I’ve never forgotten, which was that while computing power doubles every 18 months, battery power doubles every 18 years, which is a much longer timeframe.
Every year since then I’ve seen batteries slowly get better and better, despite the ever increasing amounts of processing power, pixel densities and wireless connectivity that is demanded form ever slimmer and smaller battery packs.
So, it was with great interest that I read Lenmar’s press release detailing three new batteries packs going on sale at Harvey Norman – The ChugPlug for the MacBook Air and 13-inch MacBook Pro that gives up to 4 hours extra charge at $199.95, The Goliath laptop battery charger that fully recharges a notebook in 3-4 hours using the notebook’s AC power connector for $149.95, and the Mutant, which can recharge up to four USB devices simultaneously with a massive 20,800mAh battery for $169.95.
Let’s start with The ChugPlug. This unit uses your existing MacBook charger to connect to your MacBook and the ChugPlug battery, which means the ChugPlug does not need to have its own Apple MagSafe power connector.
It weighs 1.1 pounds or 0.49kg, works with 45W and 60W MacBook chargers, has LED battery level indicators, overcharge protection, comes in white and delivers “up to 4 hours extra charge”, with a one year warranty and is $199.95 as listed above.
Next is The Goliath. Inside is a 5,500mAh Lithium-Polymer battery that can fully recharge your notebook’s battery in 3 to 4 hours via the AC socket, while also having a USB port to charge smartphones, mp3 players and other USB powered devices. It’s compact, lightweight and “ultra-thin”, and works with Toshiba, Sony, Samsung, HP, Compaq, Dell, Asus and Acer notebooks, and also comes with a one year warranty. It sells for $149.95.
The third new battery is The Mutant. It comes with AC adaptors for Australia, the UK and the EU, and can plug into 100-240V power, so it’s ready to go for international travel and has that whopping 20,800mAh battery with 4 USB ports, two of which are 2.4A to deal with power hungry iPads, and two 1A USB ports for your regular USB devices such as smartphones, mp3 players and other less power hungry USB devices.
It takes 10 hours to recharge The Mutant, similar to an iPad, but this is to be expected with such a big battery. Available in black, it has a one year warranty, too.
We’ve asked Lenmar to send us a review unit of The ChugPlug and The Goliath so we can test them out and bring you a full review of each, but we’re expecting them to deliver as advertised and continue ushering in the mobile power revolution.
We still don’t have notebook or even tablet batteries than can last a full 24 hours, and while a few smartphones can go the distance with minimal usage, everyone wants week or even month-long power from batteries to arrive in the not-too-distant future.
Hopefully we won’t have to wait another 18 years for this to happen, but in the meantime, if your gadgets and portable computers need a few more hours of battery life without needing to find an AC outlet, you now have the power to make that a reality.