AAduino Arduino Compatible Board Fits Neatly into an AA Battery Holder

Johan Kanflo has been using Arduino compatible boards based on Tiny328 MCU with an ISM radio module (wireless Arduino clone), but he found that finding a case was not easy, and was quite not ready to to design its own and print it with a 3D printer. So instead he shrank the board to fit into an AA battery case bought on Ebay with two AA batteries taking the remaining slots. That’s the result. AAduino board specifications: MCU – Atmel ATMega328p clocked at 8 MHz to save power Radio – RFM69C ISM transceiver module Sensors – Two DS18B20 temperature sensors Misc – Indicator LED Keystone battery terminals rotated 180° to act as positive and negative terminals. Power – 2x AA batteries The project is also open source hardware, with all hardware files released under the MIT license on Github, where you’ll also find a demo sketch for the board. Via […]

Super VOOC Technology Fully Charges Your Depleted Phone Battery in 10 to 15 Minutes

Several fast charging technology are either available or available now with Quick Charge  probably the better known, but Huawei has also showcased their own fast charging solution capable of filling up a typical smartphone battery to about 50% in 5 minutes, and Oppo has been using VOOC in their smartphones since 2014. The second version of VOOC, called Super VOOC, is promising even faster charging as the company showcased a smartphone with 2,500 mAh at Mobile World Congress 2016 that can be charge from about 5% to 100% in 10 to 15 minutes. Oppo revealed some of the key advantages of the technology in a blog post: Charging is always done at 5V, contrary to Qualcomm Quick  Charge that starts with the high voltage (12V), and as the battery fills up drops to 9 and eventually 5V. Temperature is lower compared to competing solution due to the 5V charging, which […]

Ocean is a Battery Powered Mobile Server Powered by Allwinner A20 Processor

iCracked, a company selling and repairing iPhones, has designed a thin and battery powered mobile Linux server called Ocean. The device is powered by Allwinner A20 processor with 1GB RAM, 4GB flash completed with 8 to 64 GB internal storage (SD card), and runs Debian 8.1 Jessie. Ocean mini server specifications: SoC – Dual core ARM Cortex A7 processor @ 1.0 GHz System Memory – 1GB DDR3 @ 480 MHz Storage – 4GB flash for firmware, 8 to 64 GB internal SD card Connectivity – 802.11 b/g/n WiFi up to 72 Mbps, and Bluetooth 4.0 LE + EDR with 10 dBm Antenna USB – 1x USB 2.0 host port, 1x mini USB for power Misc – Programmable RGB button Battery – 4,200 mAh; good for two days of continuous CPU usage; Charged via mini USB port (~4 to 5 hours) or Qi charger (~10 hours) Dimensions – 15 x 7.8 […]

SMA-Q Smartwatch Mini Review and Teardown

I had great hopes for SMA-Q smartwatch, as it features an always on color e-Paper display, a built-in heart rate monitor, and promised 30-day standby battery life, as well as being 30-meter water resistant. But last week, I found out that the latter did not mean waterproof, and instead the watch was rated IP65 that’s only good enough to wash hands and a little rain, but not showering let alone swimming. In the last week, I could play with the watch, and found some serious Bluetooth connectivity issues (with Iocean M6752 smartphone), and I was recommended to upgrade the firmware of SMA-Q watch, and after that my Bluetooth issue have somewhat improve, but everything pretty much went downhill, and the watch is now out of order, and shows no sign of life. So while I was expecting to write a full review, I’ll simply report with experience with the watch […]

Huawei Quick Charging Li-Ion Batteries Promise 10 Times Faster Charge

Watt Lab, part of Huawei’s Central Research Institute, has demonstrated new fast charging batteries for smartphone and tablets at the 56th Battery Symposium in Japan. The lab claims these new batteries can be charged 10 times faster than normal batteries, reaching about 50% capacity in a 5 minutes for a 3,000 mAh battery. Two video demos were uploaded online both using a special charger for the battery only, and compared it to a mobile phone charge with a power adapter. The first demo includes a depleted 600 mAh filled to 68% in just 2 minutes. The second demo is quite similar but with a 3,000 mAh battery (620 Wh/L energy density) charged to 48% in 5 minutes. That means you could get about half day worth of battery with a 5 minute charge. The feat can apparently be achieved by adding “heteroatoms“: According to Huawei, the company bonded heteroatoms to […]

Low Cost 15.6″ Portable DVD Player Could Be Used as a Cheap Battery Powered HDMI Display

I’ve already written about portable displays with products such as Gechic On-Lap Monitors which sells for $200 and AOC USB Portable monitors are also popular, and somewhat cheaper than I expected at $120 and $199 for a 15.6″ display at respectively 1366×768 and 1920×1080 resolution, although if you live outside the US, shipping and import fees deposit bring the price much higher. A search for “portable display” on Aliexpress only showed some smaller 3.5 to 7″ displays, but I’ve been tipped about a 15.6″ portable DVD player selling for $114.53 on Chinavasion that could be used as an external display too thanks to its HDMI input. Specifications of this portable DVD player: SoC – Mediatek Solution Display – 15.6″ TFT LED Screen with 270 degree swivel; 1366×768 resolution; 16:9 aspect ratio Disc support – DVD, CD, EVD, VCD, CD-RW, DVD-R. Hitachi lens Video Output – AV Video Input – HDMI, […]

Compulab fit-Uptime is a 12V mini UPS for Intel NUCs, fit-PCs, and More

Power failures can cause loss of data, or if you are unlucky even brick your devices, and for business users there may be a maintenance cost. UPS (Uninterruptible Power Supplies) prevent those issues by providing power when the mains fail, and while they are relatively inexpensive, they are quite bulky. That’s probably Compulab designed fit-Uptime a mini UPS taking 12 to 19V input and outputting 12V to keep mini PCs such as the company’s fit-PCs or Intel NUCs for a couple of hours. fit-Uptime specifications: Capacity – 18 watt hour Input: DC 12V to 19V Output on battery – DC 12V / 5A Output when powered – 12V to 19V (same as input) / 5A Battery – Lithium polymer built-in non-replaceable (good for up to three hours) Dimensions – 6.8 cm (l) x 8 cm (w) x 3.2 cm (h); Power jack: 5.5mm x 2.5mm barrel Weight – 240g The […]

Android M Preview Images & SDK and Key Changes

Google formally announced Android M (Marshmallow?) at Google I/O, and released preview images for Nexus 5, Nexus 6, Nexus 9, and the Nexus player. If you don’t own any of these devices, you can also run Android M in the emulator using the preview SDK. So what’s new in Android M? Google reports over 100 changes, but here are some of the highlights of improvements and new features: User Control of Permissions – With Android M, apps can trigger requests for permissions at runtime, and let users choose whether to allow it. For example, if your flashlight app suddenly request access to your contact list, a window may pop up and you are free to decline it. Users will also have easy access to manage all their app permissions in settings. Doze improves Battery Life – Android M will use motion detection to learn if a device has been used […]