LG displayed an eco-friendly cell phone at the 2009 Mobile World Congress this week with a solar panel that had been built in to the back cover. Only needing natural light, if given 10 minutes of direct sunlight, the user can make a 3 minute call. The best part of the gadget is that it can be put on any LG phone. The company also has redesigned their packaging with recycled paper for the box and printed material.
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Early on when Nintendo was announcing the Wii console, they mentioned that the sensor bar might be sensitive to certain kinds of lighting, like halogen lamps. Now, according to a post in Nintendo’s forums, that lighting might also include sunlight. The post gave feedback on the user’s experience with the Wii at the Nintendo World store, and described the sunlight issue:
For about an hour or so, the sun shone right into the store, the two MP3:C kiosks had to have curtains above them, and the Wii Sports Tennis and Shooting Game kiosks were unplayable since they were “shrouded” in sunlight. Later the sun went behind a building, and everything was in working order again. So when you get your Wii, don’t play it in the sunlight.
The sunlight problems are interesting, partly because in one of the Iwata Asks interviews on Nintendo’s official site, issues with fluorescent lights and sunlight were issues that were specifically mentioned:
In the early stages of development we ran into a number of problems that we hadn’t anticipated, like the fact that the controller would react to fluorescent light, for example. Creating a mechanism that prevents the controller from responding to fluorescent light and sunlight may sound like low-profile activities, but it still gave us a lot to work on.
Clearly, Nintendo has considered various lighting schemes and issues with sensor bar placement in the design of the console, but it is somewhat unclear what steps Nintendo took to ameliorate these problems. A possibility is that the hardware at Nintendo World was an earlier version that wasn’t tuned for sunlight. It’s also hard to extrapolate how the sensor bar will react in a person’s home from the experiences at the Nintendo World store. Still, this may be a concern for consumers, particularly given the wide variety of lighting environments that are found in the home. Other than the sensor bar, issue, the feedback from the actual gameplay was favorable overall.
Read More | Nintendo Forums