Eneloop Lamp From Sanyo Also Works as Torch

A lamp that can be recharged without wires and doubles as a torch is the latest addition to Sanyo's line of products based on its Eneloop batteries.

Eneloop are rechargeable batteries that are supplied charged and ready to use unlike conventional rechargeable batteries that need to be charged. The batteries hold energy for longer than competing products, dropping over 2 years to 85 percent of charge. Most rechargeables would be dead after a such a period. Sanyo launched Eneloop in 2005 and has sold more than 80 million of them worldwide.

The new Eneloop Lamp looks similar to a flower vase with a broad base that's 12 centimeters in diameter and thin stem that's 22 centimeters high.

It glows white when switched on and the intensity of the light can be switched down if desired. Battery life is between 3 hours and 45 hours in these two modes. A third mode emits a blue light that is said to be soothing.

Two AA-size Eneloop batteries sit in its base and are automatically charged when the lamp is placed on its stand. It takes 12 hours to fully charge the two batteries when the light is switched off.

If the lamp is picked up and rotated through 90 degrees several LED lamps in the base switch on allowing it to be used as a torch with the lamp stem serving as the handle. Sanyo is also promoting this feature as a useful one for earthquake-prone Japan. Should a powerful temblor shake the lamp over in the middle of the night it will automatically switch on and provide light.

The Eneloop lamp will initially be available in Japan only where it will cost around ¥15,000 (US$156).

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