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Etón Rugged Rukus: Solid solar sound


TUAW has covered the alternative energy accessories from Etón before: the BoostTurbine is an excellent way to charge up an iPhone or iPad when the power is out, while the FRX3 acts as an emergency radio and has both solar cells and a hand crank for providing a charge to your iPhone when you need it. And the Mobius solar case for iPhone is a smart way to top off your phone. Now the company has announced the Rugged Rukus (US$99.99), an "all-terrain, solar-powered, wireless speaker."

Designed to work with any of your Bluetooth-equipped goodies, the wedge-shaped Rugged Rukus sports a 20-square-inch photovoltaic cell on one side that charges the internal lithium battery (it can also be charged by plugging into any USB port). In full sunlight, that battery can go from empty to full in five hours, and when the lights go out the Rugged Rukus can operate for up to 8 hours blasting your tunes. A USB charge takes only about 2.5 hours. Note that you can also use the battery in the Rugged Rukus to charge your iPhone.

Don't be concerned about babying the Rugged Rukus if you're at the beach or camping in a rainstorm, as it has an IPX-4 splashproof rating and it's also drop-proof from one meter (3.3 feet). The Rugged Rukus will be available soon on Amazon and at Apple and REI stores.

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