A new solar charging unit by Energy Bionics is so small it is worn on the wrist as a watch. The device can be used to charge a phone or other USB device.
The Carbon wearable charger uses solar power to charge an internal 2.96 watt-hour (3.7 v 800 mAh) lithium ion battery. It comes in two models, one that has an analogue watch face and another that is simply a charger.
Carbon claims that, when fully charged, it will give a 25 to 30 percent boost to an iPhone 4. Having used a lot of solar charging devices, I think this would be an impressive feat for something so small. I’d like to see it first hand.
Once fully discharged, the watch takes about four hours to charge in full sun, or about eight hours in shade, claims the company. The battery can also be charged more quickly via USB.
The brand is currently raising funds for the device on Kickstarter. If it makes it to production, the Carbon will retail for $120 to $135 depending on accessories and will be available in August 2014. —Sean McCoy