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Old 06-26-2010, 12:22 AM   #1
BenLee
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Sharp Creates Solar Powered eReader

http://www.electronicsweekly.com/Art...-dull-days.htm

This might be interesting to those of you who have complained about the short battery life of your eReader devices. Now you have all the battery you'll need, provided you occasionally get out of your house. I know there are some of you who never see sunlight!

I really wouldn't mind having something like this on a Nook or Kindle as backup. If this could operate purely on indoor lighting, that would be a bonus. But I can see this being adopted in the future, just like calculators took to solar cells before.
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Old 06-26-2010, 05:41 AM   #2
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what a cool idea! i'd leave the house occasionally in daylight if doing so would let me charge my reader
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Old 06-26-2010, 05:58 AM   #3
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what a cool idea! i'd leave the house occasionally in daylight if doing so would let me charge my reader
it's a hot idea
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Old 06-26-2010, 06:06 AM   #4
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Would you absolutely have to leave? My solar powered calculator works indoors. Maybe double the number of solar cells?
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Old 06-26-2010, 07:50 AM   #5
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You know if I could put the reader in the window for an hour or 2 and not have to charge it, would be way worth it.
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Old 06-26-2010, 09:13 AM   #6
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Solar cells on the back of the device should be enough to power it up. In fact, it would be another way to make ebooks more consumer-friendly.
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Old 06-26-2010, 10:32 AM   #7
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Personally, I have always thought putting solar cells on the front of the Kindle leather case would make sense. It could be "permanently" plugged in using the hinge to attach the Kindle 2 to the case. This way, a trickle charge could be applied to the Kindle while it was unused. And, given the Kindle already has a two week battery life, you'd rarely run the battery down.
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Old 06-26-2010, 11:11 AM   #8
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I wonder how heavy the reader would be with the solar cells. Any pictures of the reader?
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Old 06-26-2010, 11:54 AM   #9
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Since the screen needs an external light to be visible anyway this could make a lot of sense; the main technical goal would be to make the processor and memory consume low enough power that a standard reading light could power the device indefinitely without a "charge up" period (like those solar calculators). Exciting times. Wouldn't look for it in the store though.
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Old 06-26-2010, 01:28 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by basschick View Post
what a cool idea! i'd leave the house occasionally in daylight if doing so would let me charge my reader
Haha...Sharp is therefore indirectly promoting exercise, tanning, and possibly increased Starbucks coffee sales.

Seriously though, having a solar unit on the device that can also "buffer" energy for future consumption while not in use would be amazing. This would ensure that you almost never run out of battery. You wouldn't even think twice about how many pages you have left before a charge anymore. Let's hope they take a serious look into this technology.
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Old 06-27-2010, 12:41 AM   #11
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Or one could use a multi-purpose solar charger (at least for readers with a compatible plug)

http://cgi.ebay.com.au/SOLAR-BATTERY...item27b2ead895
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Old 06-27-2010, 03:01 AM   #12
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Or one could use a multi-purpose solar charger (at least for readers with a compatible plug)

http://cgi.ebay.com.au/SOLAR-BATTERY...item27b2ead895


I like the idea of this. Can be used for a variety of things like ipod, mobile phone, etc also. It doesn't seem that expensive either. The additional ways of charging the charger gives additional flexibility when not in the sunlight.
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Old 06-27-2010, 02:38 PM   #13
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I prefer the reflective TFT display over the e-ink. (Like the Ectaco Jetbook.)
Now if "they" could develop an LCD display that had a solar cell for the reflective
layer, that would be something.

This would work fine for my Ectaco Jetbook Lite, which runs on 4ea AA batteries:
http://www.thomasdistributing.com/sh...rsllit8gi3gna7

Luck;
Ken

P.S.; I should be able to find 7hrs of daylight before the ~30hrs of reading time a
charged set of NiMH AAs gives me, runs out.

Last edited by Ken Maltby; 06-27-2010 at 02:47 PM.
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Old 06-27-2010, 03:18 PM   #14
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My calculator runs on a solar cell with nothing more needed than enough light to read the screen. So the "printing" of the text on the screen shouldn't be a problem.

But I wonder about the memory, such as remembering "last page read". Perhaps that would take a little more power than a typical calculator does.
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Old 06-28-2010, 05:31 PM   #15
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Actually, on second thought...

I don't think the built in solar cell in an ereader is going to catch on. As Apple has proven, the sale of accessories is as big a business as the actual device. With no more cables that ever need to be "replaced", that's extra money that will not be made. Will any company be willing to make less on power-cable sales? Hmm
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