|Keep e-reading with SolarKindle cover|
Friday, 13 April 2012 11:20
As the days in South Africa gradually shorten and cool, conditions become ideal to indulge in heart-warming hibernation activities, such as curling up with your Kindle.
The problem with a Kindle, as with most electronic devices, is that it eventually runs out of power. Nothing can charge one up more than reaching the climax of the novel you’ve been reading only for your Kindle to inform you that the battery is low. This is especially a problem if you are nowhere near a power outlet, or if you are away and you have forgotten to pack your charger.
A new solar powered cover, designed especially for Amazon’s Kindle 4, will see to it that you can keep reading. The SolarKindle is a foldable, thin jacket made of a leather-like material (it is unclear whether it is real or fake leather) and sporting a built-in solar panel, an LED light and a backup battery for Kindle. Once the gadget has been topped up, it will divert power to the backup.
In normal sunlight, the SolarKindle will reportedly provide Kindle users with up to three months of reading time, without using the Kindle’s own power. The backup battery also charges the LED light for up to 50 hours, allowing users to read in the dark. The LED also indicates the level of charging and how much battery power remains.
While such solar chargers for electronic readers and other devices are nothing new, with one charging pad often able to juice up a variety of gadgets – what differentiates the SolarKindle is that its backup battery can be fully charged in only eight hours, offering more or less three weeks’ worth of power. After charging it for just one hour, it will provide you with three days’ worth of reading. Most solar chargers have to be charged for long periods of time before fully charging the devices.
It is a pity that the SolarKindle can be used with the Kindle 4 only and not on other devices or readers too. The price tag of R1 197 (at online retailer WantItAll) is also quite steep, but for e-bookworms, this will surely be a small price to pay for the convenience of being able to continue reading day and night, indoors and out, with the added bonus of protecting your Kindle too.
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