Electrical power, that is.
I’ve been an early adopter of mobile computing and gadgets my entire life and have always had to find a solution to power those devices while on-the-go. Usually, that involved the purchase of a second battery or, if available, a larger batter with greater capacity.
All that changed when I got my iPhone.
I have a love/hate relationship with my iPhone. I love all that it can do. I love the App Store and the third party accessories for it. I’ve even learned to love the touchscreen (I’ve become so comfortable with typing on it that a BlackBerry or Palm keypad now feels odd to me.) The one attribute of the iPhone that continues to aggravate me is the battery life – which is only exacerbated by the fact that the device doesn’t allow for a swappable battery.
Where I used to carry nothing but a laptop and cables to charge my portable gadgets using the USB ports, I now find myself traveling everywhere with all my usual gear plus the iPhone wall wart.
I’m constantly checking the battery drain on the device and when I find it depleting too rapidly for my liking, I’ll find myself searching for an electrical outlet somewhere. Anywhere. I’m like an addict, looking for his next hit.
I’ve been known to search for and power-up in the homes of friends and family, conference rooms, reception areas, random cars (I carry a USB car charger with me, too.), restaurants, Penn Station, the New York City Subway, airplane bathrooms, airports and even my son’s elementary school during parent’s night.
I’ve even resorted to purchasing some USB extension cables, for those times when an outlet is just slightly out-of-reach of the standard iPhone cable.
For those times when I know I won’t be able to get a charge from an outlet, I’ve purchased a portable battery charging system from iGo that uses standard AA batteries and has an adapter for the iPhone. (Hey, you can always find a AA battery somewhere…) I use it frequently on airplanes when I want to watch a movie on my iPhone but still want to arrive at my destination with a full charge.
And please note, I have an iPhone – not an iPhone 3G. I still haven’t purchased one because the battery drain while using 3G networks and GPS is even worse than when using EDGE network technology on the original iPhone.
The big question is: When will it get better? Of course, I’m not just talking about the iPhone.
There hasn’t been a significant improvement in battery technology in years. Everything I’ve read indicates that it will be some time before battery technology will be able to keep up with our gadgets.
In the meantime, I’ll just continue to live my underground life as an electrical succubus.