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Portable Charging Options Proliferate At CES

1/07/2014 07:00:00 PM Eastern

LAS VEGAS — The simple charger is no longer so simple. Variations of portable charging and backup battery devices are being introduced almost as broadly as new portable devices themselves, and many new form factors and technologies will debut this week at International CES.

BlueFlame is in booth 12456 debuting its first wireless charging device. The BlueFlame Conductor, an Innovations 2014 Design and Engineering Awards Honoree, is a magnetic conductive charger for the iPhone 5 that mates a magnetic charging case with a wall plate that fits on a standard outlet. The iPhone magnetically mounts on the wall plate and begins charging. The Conductor has folded prongs for maximum portability.

It has a $99.99 suggested retail.

Kirk H&J is in booth 31963 showing what it calls the world’s first foldable wireless charger. The iNPOFi foldable charger, an Innovations Design and Engineering Best of Innovations Honoree, folds up for portability and like all iNPOFi products, emits zero radiation and has more than 90 percent power transfer efficiency. Its smart recognition feature will only deliver power to compatible devices. It also functions as a flashlight when folded.

Idapt is unveiling the Modulo, a modular portable power system with replaceable, rechargeable power packs that allows users to add more power depending on their needs. Users can stack up to five Modulos together to charge multiple devices or to accommodate individual charging needs in situations where charging options are limited.

Available in single packs or three-packs, the Modulo comes with cables and skins for customizing. A solar panel module and wireless charging module to recharge the Modulo will also become available.

Lepow is also at CES with a modular charging system.

The Lepow ADD comes with two rechargeable 4,500 mAh power packs, a primary and a supplementary, that can be used to charge any smartphone or tablet separately, or in tandem for a 9,000 mAh load. If charging separately, the ADD would use up the supplementary pack’s power before switching to the power in the primary pack.

The packs can be recharged simultaneously, and because the load is split between two packs, a full recharge takes about five hours, compared with a single 9,000 mAh pack that would typically take 10 hours, Lepow said.

Users can carry extra supplementary packs as backup. Retail pricing will be $99.99 for the ADD with a primary pack and one supplementary pack. Additional supplementary packs are $39.99 each. It will ship in early Q1.

iSimple is exhibiting in booth its TranzIt Port, a combination device charger and audio hub that allows playback of music stored on the device through a vehicle’s OEM sound system.

It offers a digital-to-analog converter (DAC) for digitalonly audio devices and 2.4-amp charging with overcharge protection circuits.

Available in the first quarter, the TranzIt Port has a suggested retail of $119.

Secur Products is debuting it Sun Power Bank 400, a self-contained, solar-powered portable charger.

The Sun features a small 3-inch by 5-inch footprint that incorporates power-harvesting solar cells on its exterior, which fully charges the lithium battery pack with 18 hours of exposure to sunlight. It can also be charged via USB in five hours. Fully charged it can deliver up to four full charges to a smartphone.

The Sun has a built-in male USB cable and plug, a male MiniUSB cable and plug, and a female USB port to accommodate the charging of most portable digital devices.

The Sun Power Bank 400 weighs only 6 ounces and fits comfortably in a pocket, purse or backpack. Secur is in booth 70038.

Timbuk2 is launching at the show its Power Core Briefcase that incorporates an updated Joey T1 power-supply unit. The briefcase has a dedicated pocket with cord feeds and unrestricted port access for the charge unit. Its quilted and tricot-lined dedicated laptop pocket fits up to a 15-inch MacBook Pro.

The briefcase also has a padded top handle, removable padded shoulder strap, internal slash pockets for documents and multiple front organizer pockets. It offers a weather-tight front flap and weatherproof boot, and also includes a luggage attachment strap for piggybacking on rolling luggage.

Available in February, the Timbuk2 Power Core Briefcase comes in black, Gunmetal and Algae Green and will retail for $189. Timbuk2 is in LVH Hospitality Suite 1760.

Accell is presenting its Powramid Power Center and USB Charging Station with two USB charging ports delivering 2.1 amps each as well as six surge-protected adapter-spaced outlets.

Equipped with Power Stop technology, the Powramid automatically stops conducting power once an attached device has reached power capacity.

The Powramid provides 1,080 Joules of surge protection and features proprietary X3 MOV fireproof technology.

It has a grounded 6-foot power cord and is has a $34.99 suggested retail. Accell is in booth 20262.

Idapt is in booth 4635 introducing its i4w Universal Wireless Charger, which combines both Qi or Powermat charging standards in one unit. The i4w charges up to four devices at once and Idapt’s interchangeable tip system allows wireless charging using either standard.

The i4w comes packaged with five tips: two MicroUSB, MiniUSB, iPhone/iPod and a Lightning tip. It will begin shipping worldwide after the show, and sells for $99.99.

ITA Accessories, in LVH booth 59015, is introducing a portable charger/water bottle/Bluetooth speaker combo called the Sporty.

On top is a 5-watt speaker that can be connected via Bluetooth through a smartphone (or through an aux input from any MP3 player). The body is a sports water bottle, and on the bottom is a rechargeable power pack to recharge the smartphone.

It has a suggested retail of $69.99. Ocean Computer Technology, under the brand name Unitek, is introducing a USB charging station that can charge 10 devices at once.

Each port provides 2.1 amps and feature a circuit that offers over-heating, over-current and over-charging protection. Charging automatically stops when a device’s battery is full.

Ocean Computer is in LVH booth 48006. PowerStick.com is in booth 80403 showing the PowerSound, a portable power source and portable wireless speaker combo featuring near field audio technology. The charger features 4-watt stereo speakers for music or hands-free calling and conferencing.

The PowerSound has a retail price of $99. UCO is in booth 50010 introducing its Tetra LED Lantern + USB Charger which shifts between flashlight and lantern functions and features a USB-charging port.

The Tetra has a water-resistant housing, weighs 4.5 ounces and is just 4.75 inches long when closed. The flashlight function 50 hours on a full charge. The brightness is adjustable up to 150 lumens.

Powered by a rechargeable 2.5AH li-ion battery, the frosted globe of the Tetra slides up for a diffused white light in lantern mode and collapses down for flashlight mode with an LED beam projection of 150 feet. Additional features include a split ring for hanging and an LED indicator light that displays battery level and charging status. The Tetra’s suggested retail is $49.99.

Finally, start-up Unibat is making its CES debut in booth 80245 introducing the Power- Shake 2600 lipstick-sized mobile charger.

The Unibat uses a lead-free lithium-ion battery; has a triple-printed circuit board, and four LED lights that illuminate when the unit is shaken, to indicate charge left. It is guaranteed to provide 500 cycles of backup power.

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