I’m glad to see SOMEONE taking the Arduino/LiPo problem seriously. Kudos!
It gets a bit messier if you want to use the DS1307 RTC chip to know what time it is, as that chip requires 5V for some baffling reason.
I second that. The battery gauge chip is a definitive plus over a “dumb” charger, too.
Why not use a different chip that can work at 3.3V?
And it took a 14 year-old to actually do something about it!
Reading the Kickstarter, this is actually one of the most sound projects I’ve seen on there. It was fully designed and prototyped before the Kickstarter, and will be manufactured by SparkFun, who have a proven record.
If you don’t want to wait for him to complete the product, you can buy a FIO that will do all this and have a built in XBee connector
Just in case you don’t want to wait until 2016 to get that kids GREAT idea!
DS3231 is pretty much a drop-in replacement, works at 3.3V or 5V, and is far more accurate than the DS1307.
There are two crucial differences here. The FIO is significantly bigger, and the charging chip is a dumb charger without fuel gauge so you are left with no knowledge (or a highly temperature-sensitive assumption, if you base it on battery voltage) of the remaining battery charge.
Similar but different product for similar but different uses.
Edit: Also, microUSB connector for charging, compatible with virtually all cellphone chargers (except the iCrap obscurities), instead of FIO’s slightly more robust but ultimately less-practical miniUSB.
I think to any outsider, such as myself, the mini USB feels mechanically superior and less fragile. But, according to a poster at your link:
The original mini-USB had an extremely poor insertion lifetime - about 1000 insertions total …
Insertion lifetime was increased to about 5,000 cycles. This sounds
high enough in theory but in practice the design was still walking
wounded with respect to mechanical reliability. 5,000 cycles is a very
poor rating in the connector industry. While most users will not achieve
that many insertion cycles, the actual reliability in heavy use is
The micro-USB connector was designed with these past failings in mind
and has a rated lifetime of about 10,000 insertion cycles. This despite
its apparent frailty and what may appear to be a less robust design.
Not something I’ve ever heard before. But I can tell you that I’ve had way more problems with miro-USB cables than nini’s - but that could easily be due to the fact that the connector is so ubiquitous now, so of course I’m going to experience more failures with it than the older mini-USB I used less often even if he micro is more reliable. Bias is a bitch.
The outer shroud is a little more robust on the mini. The contacts themselves are rated for twice the sliding wear on the micro. One is not mutually exclusive with the other.
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