May 30, 2014

Ideas Worth Backing: DouBBleTime USB Charging Cable

Dennis O'Donnell

This post comes to you as part of our “Ideas Worth Backing” series, a monthly feature on our blog. Every month, we hunt down and help fund an awesome idea or clever invention on crowdfunding sites like Kickstarter or Indiegogo that we think is worth your attention (and maybe a contribution, too!) It’s just one small way we celebrate and encourage innovation. Found a project you think we should know about? We want to hear from you in the comments!

Dead Battery Syndrome

Most of us are – often literally – attached at the hip to our cell phones or tablets (though the latter probably won’t fit in your pocket). So there’s nothing that can bring you to a screeching halt like a dead battery. It puts a real damper on the day when you realize that you’re at the mercy of your phone or tablet’s staying power – particularly when it’s gone.

Given the fact that we create phone accessories for a living, we’re always watching for that next awesome tech innovation. Over the years, I’ve tested out dozens of different apps, gadgets and inventive ideas. In other words, when it comes to phone gear, I’ve been around the block a few times.

It’s only natural, then, that I was incredibly intrigued when I came across Minsoo and Emily Seo’s Kickstarter campaign for DouBBleTime USB charging cables, which promise “on-the-go” charging that ups a battery to full capacity in half the time of a typical USB charger.

Step Away From The Wall

DouBBleTime isn’t out to replace your standard wall charger. Instead, the problem it looks to solve is that pesky cable you’re using when you charge your device off of a laptop, PC or the USB port in your car. DouBBle Time intends to become a more mobile solution for when you either don’t want to be “handcuffed” to a wall.

How does it differ? The secret lies in a tiny chip activated by a switch.

The Magic Switch That Solves Charging Woes

Standard USB chargers are made to both communicate with your device and supply power – but we all know what happens when you try to multitask. By attempting to sync and charge, the rate at which your device charges becomes exponentially slower.

To overcome the issue of limited energy during syncing, DouBBleTime touts itself as the first USB charging equipped with a switch that allows the user to choose a “charge-only” feature, eliminating any attempt the device will make at trying to sync.
By eradicating the syncing feature and entering “DouBBle Time” mode, the device can literally (you guessed it) double the charging rate.

Need proof? DouBBleTime creators provide the following video that lays out the difference (Disclaimer: you do NOT need to watch the whole thing; it gets the point across, but it’s, well.. not all that entertaining):

The benefit to selecting “DouBBleTime mode” is not only that your device charges faster, but it’s also more secure. The charge-only feature blocks data connection, preventing any accidental or unwanted information exchange. Need to charge off someone else’s laptop during a meeting? No worries – your data isn’t going anywhere, and your phone won’t annoyingly try to sync up.

Putting It To The Test

Intrigued? We certainly are. So from one pair of entrepreneurs to another, we decided to back DouBBleTime’s Kickstarter campaign at the $35 level, which promises two cables to be shipped sometime around July.

Since DouBBleTime promises compatibility with a range of both lightning and micro-USB enabled devices, you better believe we’re going to have a field day putting it to the test in the Clear-Coat office. Charging cable showdown, anyone? Stay tuned!

We aren’t the only ones excited to try DouBBleTime cables out. Emily and Minsoo’s campaign has been wildly successful, raising more than triple their intended crowd-funding goal.

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