Thursday, September 27, 2007

Things That Work: APC UPB10 Mobile Power Adapter

I'm back from Africa, and gradually getting caught up with sleep. I have many blog posts to do, but I thought I'd get this one out of the way while it's still fresh in my mind.

I knew I'd be on the plane for long hours, so I planned ahead, loading many television shows in my 80-gig iPod. But, to handle the power in restricted environments, I purchased the APC UPB10 battery gadget I saw in Office(Depot|Max) while doing my last minute packing.
APC UPB10 Mobile Power Pack for charging mobile devices

It's a smart battery with a USB port. You simply plug your USB cord into it, as if it were a computer, and any gadgets that can charge from USB will be charged. It has a button on it that illuminates the strip showing the amount of charge still left. From the user level, it's very simple. The internal intelligence regulates charging and handles the power level strip. You can look at the advertisement for tech specs. Let me tell you how it worked for me.

I charged it up before leaving on the trip, a full month ago. Most if the time it stayed in my gadget bag since I was able to use other power sources for my iPod. On the trip out, I mainly watched the in-flight movies, since there were several I hadn't seen in the theatrical release, only watching two or three shows on my iPod.

But on the way back, it was different. I left Cape Town at 2 P.M. on Tuesday, and arrived in Austin at 11 A.M. on Wednesday, taking three planes (7 hours time zone difference). During the flights and layovers, I watched many episodes of Smallville and didn't touch the in-flight movie system. I tried to sleep a couple of times with poor success, and the iPod was playing music for that three hours. In all, I ran the iPod down to near empty four times and recharged it to full each time using the UPB10. By the time I arrived home, the APC gadget still showed that it had a quarter charge left. With the exception of landing and takeoff times, the iPod was running the whole trip. I am quite pleased. If it can handle that flight, I can't imagine one it couldn't. As you can see from the photo, it's about the same size as the iPod and fit my pocket easily.

It worked. I recommend it.

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