LAS VEGAS -- Extended batteries and a mobile charger are just some of the equipment a smartphone owner carries to prevent against notoriously short battery life. Enter battery technology company XPAL Power and the SpareOne cell phone. SpareOne has the distinction of being the only phone powered by a single AA battery.
Operating on the widely used GSM dual band network, SpareOne claims to get 10 hours of talk life at this year's CES. The phone also claims to be able to hold a charge for 15 years -- the same shelf life Energizer Ultimate Lithium battery, the recommended battery for the SpareOne. However using another type of battery (alkaline) as well as any previous use can affect the shelf life.
But the battery is only half of the magic. Users will also need to provide their own SIM card. Sprint and Verizon operating on CDMA networks aren't compatible with SpareOne, which means that some users will want to keep a GSM SIM card from T-Mobile or AT&T handy. In the case there isn't a spare SIM card lying around, users can still make an emergency call to 911.
Using the phone is relatively simple. After inserting the battery and SIM card, users turn on the phone and start making calls. Users can program up to the numbers on the speed dial. In case you ever get caught in the dark, SpareOne also has an integrated flashlight. The phone is set to go on sale some time in Q1 2012 for the very affordable price of $49.99. While it's not a smart or even feature phone, 10 hours of talk time is an attractive option, especially in an emergency situation.
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Sherri L. Smith has been cranking out product reviews for Laptopmag.com since 2011. In that time, she's reviewed more than her share of laptops, tablets, smartphones and everything in between. The resident gamer and audio junkie, Sherri was previously a managing editor for Black Web 2.0 and contributed to BET.Com and Popgadget.