External batteries for smartphones are nothing new, but a new external fuel cell from Brookstone does something a bit different by taking its power from Butane.
According to CNET, the new fuel cell comes from a partnership between Brookstone and Lilliputian Systems. Lilliputian Systems developed the butane-powered fuel cell, which it says is travel safe.
The fuel cell is able to fully charge an iPhone between 10 and 14 times before the cell runs dry. Those 10-14 charges should mean each cell will last the average user about two weeks.
Users will be able to buy replacement cells for about the price of a Starbucks coffee, according to Mouli Ramani, vice president of business development at Lilliputian Systems. Users will be able to purchase the cells online, in Brookstone stores, or Brookstone catalogs.
The fuel cell battery will be able to charge almost any device through a USB port, so users just need to remember to carry around a USB cable. We don’t know if the device can charge an iPad efficiently but it should handle almost every smartphone on the market, and even devices like the PlayStation Vita.
Unfortunately, we don’t know exactly when this new fuel cell charger will be available in Brookstone stores, or how much it will cost. Brookstone stores should have the device later this year, but that’s a pretty large window of time. We’d expect to see it sometime before the holidays, however.
Until then, there are a multitude of other external batteries available, right now, on the market.
iPhone users can choose from a variety cases with included batteries from a variety of case makers. Most other smartphone users have to rely on external batteries that charge via USB like the recently announced Mophie Powerstation Pro. All of those batteries use rechargeable batteries, so users only have to pay for them once.