It's always fascinating to see how people seem to get the same idea at the same time on Kickstarter or Indiegogo, but usually the one company that is ultimately successful is the first to get an idea to market. In the new accessory category of "connection cable/battery pack/flashlight that fits in your wallet", that first product is Jumper Card. Yes, it is all of those things in one credit card-sized package: a USB to 30-pin Dock Connector/micro-USB/Lightning charge/sync adapter, a battery pack, and an LED flashlight. The manufacturer refers to it as the "geek Swiss Army Knife", which is an apt description of this useful accessory
- Price: US$25 (pre-orders now being taken for mid-March delivery)
- Connectors: USB to 30-pin Dock Connector, micro-USB, and Lightning
- Battery capacity: 480 mAh (by comparison, iPhone 5s capacity is 1570 mAh)
- Dimensions: 3.625" x 2.3125" x .25" (9.2 x 5.87 x .64 cm)
- Weight: 1.1 ounce (31.1 grams)
- Shelf life of fully charged battery: one year
- Battery can be recharged/discharged approximately 300 times
OK, so it's just a tiny bit bigger and thicker than a credit card, but it can help you charge or sync your iOS devices -- can a credit card do that? I was quite impressed with the build on this device; to be honest, I am underwhelmed with the fit and finish of a lot of crowd or self-funded project, and these guys definitely have the understanding that people demand quality.
It's simple to figure out how to use the Jumper Card. You just push the cables out of the card from the back, plug 'em in the appropriate places, and you're set. On one side there's a three-position switch that is clearly marked with Off, LED, and Power. Want the LED flashlight? Switch it to LED and two surprisingly bright LEDs turn on to shed some light on whatever you're looking at. Want to get some emergency power for your iPhone? Flip the switch to Power and a tiny green LED in the three-in-one connector head lights up indicating that you'll be able to give your device enough of a charge to provide about an hour of talk time.
Does it fit in a wallet? Well, if your wallet is like mine (I have a nice SFBags Finn Wallet), it's easy to slide it in and always have the assurance that you're ready for a quick charge. My wife tried this in her purse and she's very happy that she doesn't have to carry around an easily-tangled USB to 30-pin cable anymore.
I like everything about the Jumper Card. It's light, it has clean lines, and I can use it to charge or sync just about any Apple iOS device. The flashlight is bright, the extra battery capacity puts just enough in your iPhone to let you make an hours worth of calls, and as I mentioned, nothing gets tangled.
If you own any smartphone and want a way to quickly charge it when you're near a USB charging plug, or need a way to grab emergency power for your smartphone in a pinch, then the Jumper Card is $25 well spent. It's always going to be available when you need it, without taking up space or adding weight to your kit.
Rating: 4 stars out of 4 stars possible