Photo via Gizmag
File this in the "why didn't they think of that sooner?" category. Pair up watchmakers and an innovations company and find out that a mechanical mobile phone that uses kinetic energy to run is not such a far off thing. Swiss watchmakers Ulysee Nardin and SCI Innovations are creating the world’s first mechanical mobile phone. It uses a specialized Ulysse Nardin rotor that allows it to run, at least partially, off kinetic energy, just like the watch technology it's born from.
Based on an automatic watch powered by its rotor, the "Chairman" contains an integrated battery that uses the kinetic energy provided by the rotor’s motion. There's not a great deal of detail available at this stage, but it seems that this energy is used to supplement the battery instead of replacing it completely. The Chairman also integrates the rotor into its design as well as its movement, with rotor visible through the back of the phone.
We don't yet know when this will be a finished product, or if it will be something anyone other than a millionaire can afford, but it's pretty great to see a cell phone's power being supplemented by kinetic energy in an elegant way. We are, however, going to keep an eye on this to see what, if anything, it develops into.
In the mean time, there are certainly ways to charge your current cell phone via wind-up power, if you're so inclined.