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Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Super Micro-Charger

It seems that Proporta's products keep getting smaller. I just received an amazing little charger that is about a third smaller than the last one I reviewed from Proporta. But then it only has about half the storage capacity.

Proporta is now offering a Mobile Device Charger-Micro that will charge from any USB port. It will store up to 1700 mAh, which is enough power to gas up almost any portable device such as an MP3 player, camera, phone, GPS receivers and more. It does it amazingly quickly too.

It comes with an assortment of eight different adapter tips to fit the most commonly used formats. I have to insert one of my pet peeves here, which is the non-standardization of connectors. Why not just make a mini-USB connection standard so you can use the same cables for all devices? Anyway, if you don't find the connector you need for your device, ask Proporta, they may be able to supply the one you need. You get one free one with your order to fit your particular device.

The Proporta USB Mobile Device charger Micro is not compatible with the Microsoft Zune, Asus Eee PC, Apple iPhone or Nokia N95 8GB. If you are looking for a charging solution for your Nokia N95 8GB or iPhone, please see our Proporta USB Mobile Device Charger (USB Rechargeable Battery), which is compatible.

At first I lamented that the kit did not come with a car charger or an AC charger. But, sifting through my mobile kit paraphernalia I found a car charge that you can plug a USB cable into. I also found an AC charger that you can plug a USB cable into as well. So, I am pretty much set up to charge this little puppy about just about anywhere.

It's very simple to operate. It comes about 75% charged right out of the box so that you can start using it immediately. To charge it, just plug the USB cable into the in port and the other end into your computer. A series of blue lights flash to indicate charging and stay blue when fully charged. As the power in the unit decreases the blue lights diminish to indicate the power level.

To begin charging another unit with the mini-charger, select the appropriate adapter, connect the cable and push the power switch. As the power in the unit decreases the blue lights diminish to indicate the power level remaining.

In addition to the array of tips, it comes with a handy retractable cable, a USB cable with standard and mini tips and a nice nylon drawstring carrying bag.

You really should not leave home without one of these mini life-savers. You never know when you are going to run out of juice at a meeting, on a plane, or when your car is broken down. You'l l be glad you have this emergency backup supply to get you going again and again. Actually, it is supposed recharge the average device two and a half times.

To make this vital accessory part of your travel kit, go to

It will set you back $44.95 plus $4.95 shipping. I deem this crisis-averter a must-have appurtenance and a prudent investment. I notice from the Website that you can add a car charger and AC charger as I mentioned above if you do not already have them. Unfortunately, the battery does not have enough hunk to recharge laptaps. For that, you will need Proporta's portable laptop battery.

Timothy Hillebrand, Ph.D. is a retired archaeologist and windows mobile expert who writes for Smartphone & Pocket PC magazine and several other publications. Visit his blog at


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