View Full Version : Looking for feedback on battery life - Survey

10-09-2007, 14:07
Hello, I asked the moderators for permission to post and it was ok'ed.

I am looking for outdoor enthusiasts to participate in a survey about their experience with battery life in electronic devices. The survey's purpose is to provide input for a new mobile power source product. I am a product manager for a small start up company in the alternative energy sector and I'm looking for feedback and discussion with respect to powering electronics while in the outdoors.

The survey takes about 10 minutes and is anonymous unless you would like to enter a draw for an Amazon gift card. The survey is here. http://survey.constantcontact.com/survey/a07e25gig0pf5fxczsz/start (http://survey.constantcontact.com/survey/a07e25gig0pf5fxczsz/start)

Thanks in advance,

SGT Rock
10-09-2007, 14:15
I am on to confirm what Smitchl said. I also took the survey so it is legit.

10-10-2007, 03:41
Sounds like a neat product!

Uncle Silly
10-10-2007, 12:21
Eh. I wonder about "replacement energy packs". And "works better if upright". I need details, but so far I'm unimpressed. (I won't need "replacement energy packs" with a solar charger system.)

10-11-2007, 17:09
The proposed product will include fuel cell technology so the users will need to purchase replacement fuel. Of course the distribution will have to be in place such that the fuel cartridges are available everywhere. They will have to be cheaper and lighter than batteries with equivalent energy.

As for solar, I agree that is a good option. I'm planning on trying one myself (either the Solio or the Solar style units I think). But from what I've read, these chargers take quite a long time to recharge their onboard batteries (anywhere from 4-10 hours) so there's a long wait period between charger uses even in ideal sunny conditions. We're hoping that the convenience of continuous or near continuous runtime will be attractive over solar and wind-up chargers.

What do you think? Is one charge enough or would you charge several devices consecutively? All charges are not equal but assume for the moment a charge would completely charge a 900 mAH li-ion battery.

Have you had any experience with solar chargers? So far none of the respondents reports using them.


SGT Rock
10-11-2007, 19:26
I dont personally have experience with solar - but hiked with one-leg a couple of years ago. He had a solar charger for his leg's electronics. According to him he rarely got a full charge due to issues with direct sunlight. I think for AT hikers this may be an issue.

10-11-2007, 19:43
I've used a solar charger on the A.T. for Zip stove batteries. Not impressed. Wintertime use was quite a bit better than Summer.

10-11-2007, 19:53
I've used a solar charger on the A.T. for Zip stove batteries. Not impressed. Wintertime use was quite a bit better than Summer.

Not surprised - ANY shade at all will substantially diminish the output of a solar charger. I've known hikers who would actually plan a partial zero day just to recharge batteries in the summertime, and that ain't right!:(

Uncle Silly
10-11-2007, 20:59
Agreed -- anyone using a solar charger has to deal with the limitations of the technology. But that'll be true of these fuel-cell based thingies too; just different limitations.

I'd guess the estimation that one fuel-cell equals one charge of a 900mAH li-ion battery means I'd be carrying multiple cells to keep my cell phone, mp3 player, and camera charged. Now, if one fuel-cell could yield 5 to 10 full charges of a 900mAH li-ion battery, that would be a heckuva lot more useful. The former means I'm still on an energy-rationing plan, or carrying extra cells; the latter means carrying one cell at a time (much like using a canister-based stove).

10-17-2007, 18:48
It would work more like carrying a charger that you keep for a few years and you replenish it with fuel. The same cell would be fed by a fuel packet that gets depleted. The fuel packets would be available in different sizes so you could get a 2 charge or 3 charge or 5 charge or perhaps even 10 charge packet. You could bring what you think you'll need and pick up more if you run out.

Uncle Silly
10-17-2007, 21:39
Still extremely skeptical here. I'd have to see one, pick it up, preferably try it out. I can tell you that price-wise it would have to be an excellent value for me to purchase and carry it. Remember: my default option, carrying my cell's wall-plug and charging it when I get to town, is free.

10-17-2007, 22:21
Is there a prototype or some kind of design we can visulize on this product ?
Will it work in COLD temps?
Sounds interesting but need more info
Good luck with it

10-19-2007, 14:26
Good point UncleS. My job is to make sure there is a compelling reason to buy it. It'll have to be more convenient than waiting until you get to town. As for designs and prototypes, there are actually a few but they would just be confusing at this point because there are too many options. Once we get to a beta product (goal for that is next spring), we'll be looking for testers. I'll be looking here for interested reviewers and volunteers.

12-21-2007, 20:04
Thank you to all participants for your feedback. The winner of the Amazon gift card has been notified.

For those of you who agreed to be contacted sometime in the future. I will send out a request for participants in a beta program where you'll get a chance to try out the device and rate it. This will happen sometime before the spring.

All the best of the season for now!