Not only do technological advancements mean the digging of more resources for a device's parts, but it also means that we end up wasting a lot of those resources once we upgrade to our latest models (and let's face it, none of us keep the “old” models around for too long these days). One of the best pieces of hardware that we could repurpose has to be the smartphone battery. South Korean based startup Enlighten feels that doing so, with the “still 80% efficient” batteries that most of the time go in the trash, could be the a simple way to powering our current devices, like tablets, smartphones, and laptops. The company's Kickstarter campaign for its Better Re product says that $39 could save us from mining for more lithium by using the battery packs we already have.
As long as the battery is removable, it's got a new lease on life using Better Re, which turns them into external power sources using a case, USB cable, and the battery itself. Using it is a simple three-step process: a simple clip of the battery, turning to fasten, and closing the case. An LED light then shows when it's ready to charge. The best part is, small or big, pretty much any battery will fit, with the largest size being 58.5 x 97.8 x 6.5 mm. Expansion packs are also an option for additional capacity.
Considering most of us keep our phones for a year or two before switching, and those smartphone batteries still have most of what they started with, it's safe to say there is a ridiculous amount of unharnessed power going on there. It is time we start looking at the environmental and economical effects of all of this upgrading, and find ways to reduce what we use. Enlighten is one of the companies to help initiate this, and it is no wonder they have had so much support. So far the campaign has been super successful, exceeding its $50,000 goal by nearly $20,000, two days prior to ending.
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