Alexander Graham Bell (telephone), John Logie Baird (television), James Clark-Maxwell (radio). These revered Scottish inventors transformed mass communication. Now 25-year old Glaswegian Andrew Anderson, with his OnBeat solar-powered headphones, which also recharge your phone, has come up with a very neat, if not world-changing, idea that could dramatically change our listening experience and allow us to communicate more freely.
“People are listening to music on their phones and draining their batteries. So why not have your headphones, which you’re using to listen to the music, charge your phone up again?”
Flexible solar panels on the headband connect to two lithium ion batteries, one in each ear cup. Smartphones, tablets and other devices can then connect via USB to receive a charge. The headphones can also be charged using mains power. Think of them as a solar-powered Mophie rolled into a pair of headphones.
With 27 days to go, their Kickstarter campaign has 183 backers, and they have raised just under £15,000 of their £200,000 target. The headphones are currently at the prototype stage and are expected to retail at £119. Kickstarter backers can get them for £69. If the campaign is successful, they expect to begin shipping in February 2014.