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AMPY Self-Charging Battery

Is this AMPY self-charging battery the future for mobile phones?

How long does your phone battery last before you have to plug it in? A day or two at a push?  For years, running out of juice on the go has been an occupational hazard of smartphone ownership – but thanks to a new piece of wearable tech, it seems there may be some good news on the horizon.

The product in question is the AMPY, a device that captures kinetic energy when you move and stores it in an internal battery. If your phone needs a power boost, you simply plug it into the AMPY via a micro-USB port for a quick charge.

Developed by a trio of US-based PhD engineering students, AMPY recently turned to the crowdfunding platform, Kickstarter for financial backing to bring the product to market. It certainly seems to have captured the imagination of investors; as at present, AMPY has exceeded its initial $100,000 funding target three-fold and has managed to attract more than 2,500 backers.

How does it work?

Stick the AMPY in your pocket, your bag or strap it to your arm and it only takes the slightest level of movement to keep the patented linear conductor ticking over, converting kinetic energy into storable power.  According to the company, the AMPY’s internal battery can store about a week’s worth of physical activity and stays ready to use for months. It is also capable of being recharged from a wall outlet. The bundle includes an armband and sleeve.

Also included is a smartphone app that tracks the amount of energy you have generated, the number of calories burned and your carbon footprint offset from charging with AMPY as opposed to relying on the grid.

How active do you need to be to get a full charge?

This probably isn’t the ideal device for the dedicated couch potato. According to AMPY, a “daily average” of 10,000 steps is sufficient to produce enough energy to give your mobile 3 hours' worth of “normal usage”. The more active you are, the less you’ll need to rely on wall outlets.

When can I get one?

A limited launch for Kickstarter investors is currently predicted for June 2015 – and then it’s only being shipped to the US. In the UK, don’t expect to be able to get your hands on one until the latter part of the year. Don’t expect to be able to get much change from £100 per unit either.

In the meantime, we’ll have to stick with more tried and tested ways of charging our mobiles. With a £2.99 car charger from Mobile Madhouse for instance, you can get a full power boost without even having to break into a sweat! 

Is this AMPY self-charging battery the future for mobile phones?

How long does your phone battery