Nokia early this week launched a pilot project to charge Nokia phones using a solar charger. Priced at Kshs 1250, the Nokia DC-40 is seeing the Kenyan market as the first globally. Nokia aims at testing the viability of the DC-40 solar charger as an alternative mobile charging system in Africa. This pilot product will be available in limited quantities.
How it works:
The charger is a thin film panel with 165 by 237 mm in dimensions and a long cable, naturally to enable it go outside the house without necessarily accompanying the phone there. The charger weighs 93 grams. Efficiency level of this charger is like you can charge your phone for just a minute and get 2 mins talk-time. The impact on the battery depreciation as opposed to the usual chargers however not disclosed as yet. It’s most efficient when used in direct sunlight but can still give reliable performance indoors via a glass window. A 1000mAh battery will be full after a 4 hour charging in direct sunlight.
Kenya and Nigeria have only 16% and 51% of the population getting regular access to electricity via the national grid according to a 2007-2011 World Bank report. Kenya thus is one country that provides a great opportunity to test this solution.