Any Smart phone can appear pretty dumb when the battery runs out when you need it most. So what are the five most innovative ways you can charge your mobile when you're on the go?
We're so used to being able to make calls, text messages, send emails, surf the net, listen to our favourite tunes and play our favourite games at the drop of hat, that when our mobile phone unexpectedly runs out of juice, we're left high and dry, wondering when and were we can get our next fix of electricity from.
The good news is, there's no longer any need to panic. From solar power bicycle helmets to James Bond style handbags, there's now a whole range of unusual ways and means to to charge your mobile when you're on the go
A Pan of Boiling Water
It may sound odd, but next time you go camping in the great outdoors or find yourself lost beneath the stars in a muddy field at some festival in the back end of beyond, a pan of boiling water could be just what you need to reconnect with the modern world again. Created by the Japanese company TES NewEnergy, the Pan Charger allows the tech savvy naturalist to charge their phone by means of placing a boiling pan over any heat source such as a campfire. You then connect your phone to the pan via its built in USB connection and within three to five hours your mobile will be re-juiced and ready for action. What's more you can also use the boiling water to make a triumphant cup of tea.
Handbags at Dawn
This year designer Richard Nicoll introduced a revolutionary handbag which allows you to keep your mobile charged for at least two whole days. Which means you can spend your weekend in a cave in Ibiza and still play Angry Birds to your heart's content. Once you've used the mains supply to charge the handbag via a cable that magnetically attaches to the outside of the bag, you're all juiced up and ready to go, just like a 21st century Marry Poppins.
The Answer is Blowing in the Wind
The iFan harnesses the power of the wind to prevent your iPhone from running on empty. It's basically a miniature wind turbine which fits around your iPhone like a standard case, only it has a smallish fan on top. As these things have a tendency to do, it looks extremely ugly and wouldn't look out of place in an 1980's sci-fi film, but it definitely works. In six hours your phone can be cranked back up to full power. Quite naturally if you hold it out of the car window while cruising down the motorway, or attach it to your bike's handlebars while rocketing down a hill, the whole process speeds up considerably.
Use Your Head
Two engineering students in India have designed a cycle helmet which harnesses the power of the sun and the wind to charge your phone. The helmet is loaded with solar cells and a small engery-generating fan which can fully charge your phone during a standard 40 minute ride. It's great news for commuters but what on earth would Jeremy clarkson say?
The Power of Music
At the last Glastonbury festival, lucky punters were given the option to road test a new T-shirt made of a special material called piezoeletric, which can transform musical vibrations into an electrical charge. The sound waves create the energy which in turn is stored in a reservoir battery inside the T-shirt which can then be used to charge your mobile. It wasn't a great success but at least it allowed a few haggard and haunted technological junkies a few extra hours of quality time with their beloved smart phones.