Today I am checking out a solar charger from MiniInTheBox that will work for all sorts of gadgets including the iPhone and iPod. The charger is called the Portable USB Solar Panel Charger for iPhone 4/3G/3GS Cell Phones. That is a mouthful of a name so I will just call it the Portable USB Solar Charger. Read on for all of the details.
The Portable USB Solar Charger has a solar panel that can produce 0.7/0.4W of power. It has a DC output of 5.5V and a maximum current output of 500mA. The lithium ion battery inside the solar charger is a 2600mA/h unit and that battery can be charged via USB. The charger measures 120 x 73 x 10mm and weighs 125g. You can order the Portable USB Solar Charger for about $25 right now.
The Portable USB Solar Charger is slightly larger than the iPhone itself. The Portable USB Solar Charger comes with tips for the iPhone or iPods, Motorola, Samsung, Nokia, Sony Ericsson, and Siemens mobile phones. The internal battery will need about 18-20 hours to fully charge using the solar panel and will charge much faster than that using the USB port on your computer.
The Portable USB Solar Charger is housed in what appears to be an aluminum chassis. The chassis is a thin gage material and you will want to be careful with it. The Portable USB Solar Charger feels fragile and one drop might be the end of your solar charging gadget.
I used the Portable USB Solar Charger with my iPhone 4 and the smartphone recognized the charger right away. I had no problem charging my iPhone for the battery inside the solar charger. I suspect that the battery would be good for one full charge of my iPhone. Assuming the Portable USB Solar Charger holds up to life on the road, you could take the charger camping and recharge your phone fully with about 20 hours of direct sunlight on the solar panel.
That's not that bad really, solar panels tend to charge batteries slowly and if the alternative to not having this solar charger is no phone or music it's worth the price if you travel a lot. In the car, camping, or outdoors away from an outlet the Portable USB Solar Charger is the perfect device to keep your iPhone or other device charged up and running.
- Easy to use
- Works with iPhone
- Might not survive rough use
The Portable USB Solar Charger is a very nice little solar charger. The only thing I worry about is the thin case might mean it's not up to the task or a rough life on the road.
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