Quirky's Ray solar charger with suction cup goes up for pre-order
Designers of solar chargers need to deal with a certain issue: how to build a charger so that it had easy access to maximum sunlight, without much effort on the user's part. One clever solution was to combine solar cells with a bikini, but unfortunately that's really only useful on the beach. The Quirky community, a social project based around product development, has come up with another solution - it's the Ray solar charger, and it features a suction cup and a kickstand.
Utilizing a USB port suitable for numerous portable gadgets, the Ray solar charger reportedly stores enough energy to fully power a cell phone. Its suction cup can be used on any glass surface, such as house windows, or windows in cars and planes. In-car use while driving (as suggested by the picture) is a dubious idea, however, given the prevalence of lighter-based car chargers.
The tilting kickstand allows users to place the charger on flat surfaces, and also serves as a place to store the USB cord.
As with Quirky Digits and the Scratch-n-scroll mouse-pad, the Ray is the result of collaborative work within Quirky community, and it's the 137th product designed and developed since the project's launch in June 2009.
The Ray solar charger is now available for preorder, and is priced at US$39.99. The production will not start until 2,000 orders are placed (there were over 600 at the time of writing).