I have been following the rumors of a new Toshiba ultra-portable laptop with great interest. Not because it is super thin and light — what has me excited is the Super Charge Ion Battery (SCiB) it’s reported to use. This is significant as these batteries supposedly can be 90% charged in a mere 10 minutes. Think about that for a moment. If you could charge your notebook battery in 10 minutes it could change the way you work while mobile.
Notebooks today have decent battery life, but nowhere near all day capability for the most part. While notebook batteries have gotten better in the last few years, improvements have been slow and incremental. Notebook components have continued to get more power efficient to help out in this regard, but the magical all-day battery is largely still a myth.
This is why the SCiB technology has the potential to be game changing. Even if it only lasted 3 or 4 hours on a charge, if you could charge it in just a few minutes (instead of hours like typical batteries) that short life might not be such a big thing for mobile workers. If you could plug in for a few minutes and revive your laptop, it could make all day working on battery power a reality.
I hope this Toshiba laptop hits the market — to get this battery in use if for no other reason. I have a feeling it will not be cheap, as significant improvements rarely are. I am certainly watching closely to see how this develops.
Related research on GigaOM Pro (sub. req’d): To Win In the Mobile Market, Focus On Consumers