Tiny ChargeKey for iPhone 5 is always handy and ready to go

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Tiny ChargeKey for iPhone 5 is always handy and ready to go

Charging cables that are at your fingertips all the time just keep getting smaller and smaller. Back in March of this year, TUAW reviewed the ChargeCard, a USB to 30-pin Dock Connector charging cable the exact size of a credit card. Now there's the ChargeKey for iPhone 5 (US$25), an even smaller emergency charging cable that's the size of a house key.

Not surprisingly, both products are made by the same California company, Nomad. The design of the ChargeKey makes it a snap to attach to your keychain or to remove it for a quick charge. On one end is an open-faced USB connector, while a Lightning connector sits on the opposite end. If you're anywhere that there's an open USB port, you can plug in your iPhone (or iPad -- the ChargeKey is designed to withstand up to 3.1 A of current) to top it off.

At $25, you're really paying for the convenience of having a cable you can attach to a keychain. Apple's Lightning to USB cables run $29, but other manufacturers sell short 4-inch cables for as low as $11.90 each.

The company is doing an initial production run of 10,000 ChargeKeys, and plans to ship them to purchasers on November 30, 2013.

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