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Houston, we have a problem

We recall with fondness some friendly banter a few years ago between leading icons of the IT and motor industries.  Those on the IT side of the fence were bemoaning the fact that cars hadn’t evolved sufficiently, and that their evolution was painfully slow when compared with that of computers.  They commented on the low-tech consoles with limited functionality and the continued use of the very low tech (and environmentally-unfriendly) internal combustion engine, and said that, essentially, cars hadn’t really moved on since they were invented!

The motor industry responded with the witty retort that if cars had evolved like computers then half the time they would take twenty minutes to start, would occasionally, suddenly, unpredictably and randomly stop working when in the outside lane at 70 mph, and that periodically the doors would open while driving.  Or something like that!

Now, you may be wondering why we chose to mention this … well, we were considering how technology – any kind of technology – does evolve, and how common it is for supporting technologies to evolve at a different – and often slower – pace …

 … and there’s one area which affects many of us much of the time which can be summed up as follows:

“Sorry, my phone’s running out of charge.”

We’re all familiar with the comparison, but here are the vital statistics of the Apollo guidance computers and a modern smartphone:

Apollo Guidance Computer
Data from NASA’s Apollo Flight Journal, Computers in Spaceflight: The NASA Experience

Dimensions: 24 x 12.5 x 6.5 inches
Weight: 70 pounds
Processor speed: 1 MHz
Memory: 2,048 words (32,768 bits or roughly 4kB)
Display: seven-segment numeric
Power consumption: 55 watts

Apple iPhone 4S (now superseded of course!)

Data from Apple,

Dimensions: 4.5 x 2.31 x 0.37 inches
Weight: 4.9 ounces
Processor speed: 800 MHz, dual core
Memory: 512 MB of RAM, built in storage of 16, 32, or 64 GB
Display: 3.5 inches, full colour, 649 x 960 pixels
Power consumption: 0.7 to 1.5 watts

A truly incredible difference, and a testament to man’s ingenuity.


… and it’s a very big but … battery technology hasn’t evolved at the same pace.  At all!  So when you consider all the things you can do on a smartphone these days (apart from make phone calls) – email, watch movies, play games, listen to music, social media – the list of applications is enormous and growing all the time – it’s hardly a surprise that they go flat so quickly.

And it’s not only smartphones that need power.  The plethora of gadgets – Bluetooth devices, mp3 players, SatNav systems, tablets, games consoles … they all need regularly boosting.  And since we’re not always sitting comfortably at home using these devices … what do we do?

Cue, “powerbanks”

What are they?

Very simply, they are portable chargers.  You charge them when you’re on the grid, take them out with you, and when your devices start to go flat … you plug them in!  Brilliant!  And the good news is – they’re getting smaller, more creative, more user-friendly, and more powerful all the time.

And so to the powerbank as a promotional product!

We’ve covered a wide range of wonderful and innovative promotional products in previous articles, and each time we do we’re massively enthused by the marketing possibilities …

… and we’re no less enthused by these!  Are we being too bold when we say that everyone in possession of a smartphone (and/or any of the gadgets mentioned above, or all the ones we didn’t mention) would want a powerbank of some description?  So imagine if they were branded with your company’s details?  How often would they be used?  How often looked at?  How frequently remembered?  Enough said …

Check out our wonderful range 

We have a fantastic range of powerbanks of all types – you can check out the range here – and we invite you to imagine the possibilities for your brand!

And when you’ve done that, get in touch with us and see how we can help you – you’ll be delighted with the results:

You can click here to learn more about many of the other brilliant promotional products that we have, here for our home page, or call us any time on 020 8391 3001

we’re ready and waiting to help!