By Rob Dunn
Contributing Writer, [GAS]
Coming soon from Brightonnet, a rechargeable battery pack which can be used to extend the playing time for iPods, cell phones, or other USB-powered devices. The device also includes an LCD screen showing the battery level status, and it can be recharged (if the batteries support this) by plugging it into a standard PC USB port.
Initially available in Japan on August 2nd, I would expect these gadgets will make their way here to the West shortly after.
Applications for this charger/booster unit are for pretty much anything that runs or charges from a 5v USB power connection, such as, but not limited to an iPod, BlackBerry, other Cells, etc..
I’m not sure why they did not include a female USB port to receive the male end of standard charge/sync cables. Instead, Brightonnet opted for using a power-pin jack and 3 attachable (i.e. losable) modules…hopefully they will release a second version that is a bit more universal.
If you are handy enough and are impatient for this import, you can roll your own by following these directions for the DIY “Minty Boost” USB battery pack contained within an Altoids candy tin, courtesy of Make Zine.