Cell Phone Accessories

YankCharger prevents cellphone yanking, cord breakages

Just about anybody who regularly charges a cellphone in public places knows how annoying it can be to have their device knocked off of a table while waiting for it to finish charging. Especially when the phone winds up breaking.

The YankCharger, from a Bend, Oregon inventor solves that issue. The anti-yank charging cord has a plug built into it to limit the amount of force that can be applied to a phone charging port. The cord’s reliable connection ensures that the phone will not go flying, no matter how hard the cable is yanked on. Backers who pledge $20 will get a YankCharger with microUSB connection and those who pledge $24 will get a version with lightning connection for iPhones when the device ships in April. The expected retail price of the cord isn’t known. Its inventor is trying to raise $4,500 by Jan. 27 so that he can make a minimum order of product and get the YankCharger custom-tailored to his specifications.

The charging cord has a very narrow purpose, but one that many consumers may find appealing. It’s not clear, however, if consumers will be willing to spend more than $20 just for a cord.


WrapAround keeps your power cords in order

WrapAroundMessy cords can be an eyesore and tangle causing broken devices and inconvenience. Some products come with their own bread tab to gather cords with, but they don’t always work well. The WrapAround is a cord organization system. It is designed to gather cords neatly and each WrapAround clips together so that multiple cords, such as those needed for a television system can stay together in nice, organized bundles. For a set of four, backers can shell out $10 early or $12 at a regular price. WrapAround needs to raise $17,500 in a month long Kickstarter campaign to reach its goal.

Tech Accessories

This Python protects MacBook adapters by reinforcing the MagSafe cable

PythonThose of us who have laptops end up bringing them absolutely everywhere and plug into every outlet that we can find, even if the cord barely reaches. While this is convenient at the time, the laptop cords wear down and eventually break. The Python Cord Protector snakes around the cord and loops over the battery pack of a Mac cord to keep the wire casing straight and intact. One Python only costs backers $11 with an estimated delivery date of July 2014. This product hopes to raise $5,000 in its 30-day Kickstarter campaign.

Tech Accessories

TwistVolt shrugs at plugs, twists to accommodate wall warts and USB cables

editors-choiceThe Premise. Power cords are almost always dysfunctional. They look messy and can’t fit too many plugs at once. It’s almost impossible to find a power strip that is actually well-made or useful without several big drawbacks.

The Product. TwistVolt provides a “new twist on the power strip”. This clever product twists and turns so that each plug doesn’t sit right next to the other if desired. Using several triangle formations, each outlet is accessible and the strip can be used to its full potential. In addition, fancier versions of the TwistVolt come with USB ports. LED lights are also featured in this product, making it look very cool. Part of the allure of TwistVolt is that it is a power strip that you won’t want to hide.

The Pitch. This is not TwistVolt’s first time at the crowdfunding dance, having had a campaign at Dragon Innovation last November. The video for this revamped power cord shows how it stacks up against its competition and also how many different devices can be plugged into it. The rest of the campaign features the various ways that TwistVolt can be configured, including hexagonal and zigzag shapes. Michael Schroeder, the Bostonian creator of this product, has set a whopping $125,000 goal for this product in his 30-day Kickstarter campaign.

The Perks. For $49, backers can enjoy the TwistVolt standard which includes five outlets and an integrated circuit breaker. One TwistVolt with two USB ports and LED backlit side panels goes for $89. Two other TwistVolt versions with four USB ports and eight USB ports costs backers $99 and $129 respectively. Reward tiers go all the way up to $2,900 with estimated delivery dates of December 2014.

The Potential. Without a doubt, one of the main competitors for the TwistVolt would be the crowdsourced PivotPower by Quirky, that company’s greatest success story. There have also been other solutions to the challenge of wall wart proliferation. Particularly with its LED lighting option, TwistVolt truly looks cool, even with a bunch of cords sticking out of it, and the way it bends makes traveling much easier. While a little expensive particularly for the high-power USB versions, the TwistVolt could make up some of ithave USB s expenses because they customers may not need to buy a USB-to-wall outlet converter. All in all, this product combines the best parts of functionality, design and innovation in an item that we use every single day.

Tech Accessories

Miclip hangs around so mic headphone cords behave

Miclip  9bf8108f057df98aa8319d35211da4f9_large[1]There are many cord wraps out there, but they don’t all do the best job of letting you use your earbuds while keeping them partially wound to pick up the slack. That’s why there’s Miclip. The wooden or acrylic gadget attaches to the cord so you don’t lose it, and uses its natural tension to stretch it out and keep it attached. Miclip also works with cords that don’t have a mic headset. For $6 a backer gets the wooden version, or choose the acrylic for $8. Expected delivery is July 2014.

Cell Phone Accessories Chargers/Batteries

I’m Tidy keeps Lightning cables wound, iPhone off ground

TidyPhoneCordWrapApple did a great job with the AC adapter for its laptops, which allow you to wrap the cords around them for more organized travel. Alas, the company passed on that opportunity with the iPhone, leaving no great options for tucking away its Lightning cable, an issue others have tackled. The I’m Tidy is a small silicone covering for Apple’s standard iPhone wall charger that allows you to wrap your lightning connector around it. As a bonus, it will support your iPhone upright atop the wall charger when it’s plugged in. The bit of silicone is expected to ship in June 2014 for backers for $25 CAD after the early bird tier runs out.