Just because someone is getting close to nature doesn't necessarily mean they need to ditch their smartphone. However, keeping a device charged while in the great outdoors is not always the easiest thing to do. After all, those trees don't come equipped with power outlets. We've already seen the BioLite stove that generates its own power. A new product called VOTO performs a similar function, but with any cooking fire.
The device functions via a fire-activated fuel cell. The end with the fuel cell is placed under the fire with the charcoal, and the end with the connected battery sticks out from the top. Because the device holds power on its own, users can charge it up while cooking and then connect their devices to it when it's safely away from the fire.
According to Point Source Power, the VOTO's 4000 mAh battery can receive a full charge in two cooking sessions, but that will obviously vary depending on the situation.
In addition to the phone-charging portion of the device, the VOTO also includes an LED light that receives its power through the same means. The LED puts out 25 lumens, which should be quite sufficient for most individuals' needs. When fully charged, the LED is able to provide up to 30 hours of light.
The creators of the VOTO have this product aimed at two very different markets. First, there's the developed world, where campers will gladly welcome something to keep their devices charged while in the wilderness. Second, there's the developing world, where electricity is not readily available, but cooking fires are commonplace.
The video below features Point Source Power's CEO Craig Jacobson explaining the device.