Battery stand-by is always critical for mobile devices like mobile phones or PDAs and becomes even more important if both is combined in one device like with the Pocket PC Phone Edition.
Gomadic, specialist for cable solutions, recently released it's Power Sync Charging USB Cable solution for the xda (see also my previous review about the same solution for the Compaq iPAQ).
While the connectors of the xda and the iPAQ are the same the contacts are different which requires an own cable. Don't use any iPAQ cables with your xda - without a dedicated iPAQ/xda adapter like available from Datanywhere.com.
The Gomadic USB sync and charging cable is 5-foot long and can be used therefore even if the USB port of the Desktop PC is on the backside.
If the cable is connected with one end to a PC and the other end to the Phone Edition the PC starts ActiveSync right in the moment everything is connected, as you already know it from your cradle. However, unlikely the original xda USB cable, it charges the Pocket PC also. The original xda cable requires the power plug anyway to charge the device, otherwise the cable is good for synchronization only!
In addition to the USB cable, Gomadic also sent me its car and travel chargers which connects to the USB plug of the cable.
With this accessories you can charge your device even without a PC like in your car or your Hotel room. The best of all is that it's the same chargers which can be used with other Gomadic USB cables like available for the HP iPAQ or the Toshiba Genio series. So in future, if you change your Pocket PC you have to change the USB cable only but still can use the chargers. The only disappointing thing (specially for me as a European) is the power plug. This supports the US American power socket only which means at least you have to buy a separate adapter if you are traveling international. Here I would like to see a smarter solution but this isn't a real show-stopper at all for a great accessory.
Again Gomadic developed a smart, useful and cheap USB cable for one of the best Pocket PCs which adds a real value. I'm always afraid to run out of battery but now I don't have to fear this worst case scenario anymore as I can charge my xda in my car and more or less wherever I go, without taking the separate (original) xda cable and power plug with me!
The USB cable is available for US$14.95 right from Gomadics web site. The separate car charger is available for only US$ 5.00 more. The car and travel chargers costs US$ 15.00 and are a good deal for sure!
Cheers ~ Arne
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