updated 12:20 pm EST, Wed February 3, 2010
Scosche puts out second-gen solar charger
Accessory maker Scosche today put out the solBAT II as its second wave of solar-powered external batteries. The pack gives iPhones, iPods and most handheld USB devices a 1,500mAh lithium-ion pack whose sun recharging lets it provide "free" energy to keep a device going. A single charge is estimated to be enough to power a typical cellphone twice over, though it's not known how efficiently it works for smartphones; Scosche says the add-on behaves like a maximum 5V wall adapter.
The peripheral can recharge directly through its USB port in a rush and has mounts for both a backpack's carabineer or a car windshield to keep the battery exposed to sunlight without it falling out of place. Stores should have the solBAT II today and will usually sell it for $30.