I Canna' Get No Power, Captain!

You can take all the precautions in the world, but your batteries are still going to drain. Would you like to watch? The battery meter is normally buried in the EXTRAS folder, but utilities such as Backdrop+ move it to the desktop; PowerOff adds a digital % readout button to the backdrop app; Battery Metrics adds a status tab to the lower left of the screen.

But for the ultimate in battery babysitting, Newt's Battery is the power user's way to watch those milliamps trickle away. And if you need to be even more analytical, BATLOG, written by Dick Campbell, will provide an MP2xxx current load timestrip for some real number crunching.

For everything you may have wanted to know about batteries and charging, be sure to check out the Newton Battery FAQ.

Battery Packs

Apple NiCad Battery Pack
Nickel Cadmium for the 110/120/130 series.
Apple NiMH Battery Pack
Nickel Metal Hydride for the MP2xxx series. 1 hour recharge.
Conventional NiMH AA Cells
Jeff Byrkit reports that Radio Shack sells standard form-factor 1200 mA/h NiMH rechargeable batteries ($10 per pair) and a 4-cell NiMH/NiCad charger ($17). Jeff warns that the charging runs hot, and he is unsure whether the 8-hour cycle of the charger could cause damage to the 5.5 hour recharge time of the cells.

Charging Stations

Apple 9W Power Adapter
Run on AC power and charge your NiCad or NiMH battery pack at the same time! Conversion plugs available for European outlets. The AC adapter for older MessagePads (Layne Harris has a limited quantity of these available) is different from the MP2 versions, but still compatible. Enfour has  announced their own $20 power adapter, but product info is not yet available.
KISS Solar Charging Station
A solar panel assembly complete with its own carrying case will keep any Newton battery pack charged.

Base Stations

Newton Charging Station
Dock your 110/120/130 in the cradle and charge your battery while in use. Can also charge an external battery pack simultaneously.
Newton Connection Center
A docking station to operate and recharge your 110/120/130, plus an external serial port for connecting to desktops. An optional modem on the serial port can be shared by both Newton and desktop.

If you know of a device that belongs on this list, please send me the URL.

Back To NewtPower

January 27, 2003