willspring55, January 5, 2017
By K Becker
Some unique and interesting ways of keeping smartphones and other gadgets charged while traveling or living off the grid appeared in recent years. You can keep your mobile devices up and running with everything from USB battery packs to solar panels, even when you don’t have access to a power outlet. We’ve even seen smartphone cases with built-in batteries that can help extend a charge just a bit further. But we’ve never seen anything quite like the Ampware — an iPhone case that lets you keep your device charged anytime, anywhere, no matter the conditions.
The Ampware case is the brainchild of Mark Gabriel, who found himself without power after Hurricane Katrina made landfall in 2005. Luckily, Gabriel did have a radio that could be charged using a built-in hand crank, which proved invaluable for keeping up with the latest news and monitoring the relief efforts in the wake of the hurricane’s passing. But his cell phone ran out of power after a day or two, rendering it useless. It was during that time that he came up with the concept of using a hand crank to recharge a smartphone, and later he would partner with friend Erik Durr to design a solution that would make this idea a reality. It was then that the Ampware was born.
The Ampware is capable of generating up to 1,000 mAh of power and transfers it to the iPhone via the standard eight-pin lightning connector. That makes it perfect for backpackers, frequent travelers, or anyone else who finds themselves away from a power outlet on a regular basis but still needs to be able to keep their smartphone running. The case actually generates more consistent power than a solar panel for instance and eliminates the need for carrying a USB battery pack, which would require a recharge of its own at some point as well. In theory, you could conceivably hit the trail without even carrying a charging cable, provided you don’t mind turning the crank on a regular basis.