This ingenious external battery pack uses a laptop charger for speedy charging

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Most external battery packs charge through a USB cord, like the phones to which they provide backup power. But USB cords have low max amperages — usually around 500mA — which means they top out at slow charging rate. Instead of charging a battery through your phone’s charger, a smart new Kickstarter wants you to use the laptop charger you’re lugging around anyway.

The product is called ThinkPower, and it uses a Lenovo Thinkpad A/C adapter(sold separately) to charge a 10,00mAh battery in 90 minutes, if the Kickstarter’s claims are to be believed. The $40 battery pack has two USB ports so you can charge any USB connected device, like an iPhone or even a Raspberry Pi. A laptop charger usually has an amperage rating of around 3.5A, which is several times what a USB cord maxes out at. It’s a win-win situation: The battery can charge much quicker using the higher amperage, and you can carry one fewer cord around.

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Of course, as a Kickstarter, there are still several additional hurdles: It still needs thousands of dollars in funding. Plus, there’s potential legal trouble. I’m not sure if the ThinkPower is authorized to use the Lenovo A/C connector — Apple has sued companies in the past for copying its MagSafe — and even if it is, the “Think” might be infringing on a few trademarks. So Lenovo could prematurely end this product’s development if it wanted to. But if it knows what a good idea looks like, it should hire the team and build one of its own.

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ALFRED

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don

it uses a Lenovo Thinkpad A/C adapter(sold separately) to charge a 10,00mAh battery in 90 minutes …

Are you putting the decimal in the right place?

These separate battery packs are good for trips in which no charging is available and during power outages as we have had recently. My URGE 4,000 mAh also functions as a LED flashlight.

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