Photo of Toshiba's prototype fuel cell-powered cell phone via TechOn
We heard last year that Toshiba planned to launch a fuel cell-powered portable media player by late ’08. Well, we’re getting on to late ’08 and we finally have heard news that the company’s first device will be launched sometime between now and the end of March ’09. The breath-holding part is just what that device will be.We don’t know exactly what device Toshiba will launch – it may be a fuel cell-powered phone shown off at CEATAC last week, or it could be the promised PMP. More likely the phone.
The prototype exhibited this time is based on an au-branded handset, the W55T, and it used a direct methanol fuel cell. The methanol fuel is charged with a dedicated cartridge. The cartridge can store 50ml of 99.5% methanol, which is enough to charge the mobile phone about 10 times.
I know, it’s a bit disappointing that we're still waiting. We’ve been hearing for years now that this button-battery sized fuel cell technology is on its way. But fuel cell-powered devices really are just right around the corner. The Medis 24/7 power pack is already out and Mobion is rapidly advancing their fuel cell technology. Having more efficient, clean ways to power our gadgets is a dream currently coming true.
So, patience, patience. Toshiba toys with alternative power sources are on their way.