Scotland and the Orkneys are not just the places you go to, to get access to much sun, which limits the ability to charge. But two weeks of the buses, trains and walking is still a good opportunity to test the handling of the HiLight. I’ve tried a few simple charging solutions before, including a solution with a separate battery pack and a detachable solar panel. After a few days, the sockets started to get loose, and parts were lost. The most important experience of two weeks with HiLight was that there is nothing really negative to report on the product. HiLight stays in place and does not get in the way if you attach it to a backpack. I travelled with a small backpack and a total of 6.5 kg packing, where every item was carefully evaluated. At no time was HiLight a hindrance during the trip.
Thanks to the flexible straps and the shape of HiLight, it was very simple to attach to the outside of a backpack.
When required, eg when I looked at some military fortresses at Scapa Flow, it was easy to turn HiLight so that the light comes out. Put your backpack on your chest and use the lamp as a forward-facing light. It’s easy to find places to attach HiLight to recharge the solar cells, such as in windows. The lamp gives enough light to a small room to be able to read in. Even a low charge level gives good light for a few hours, which goes a long way.
When you have the opportunity to recharge from the mains, HiLight charges the battery for at least two electrical devices and a few evenings of light. That is, a fully charged HiLight is good enough for a weekend of use, even if the sun does not appear. What you first think of as an odd shape, proves to be very useful. The lamp can be hung as a pendant, hung on the wall, leaning against a subject. When I was looking for my glasses, it proved to be very useful to push the HiLight under the bed.
After two weeks of use I have found one possible improvement: it would be good to attach a tripod to its edge so that you can use HiLight with a camera tripod. It would make it even easier to position for charging, and to use as a table or reading light. But it is an improvement that a user could easily do by gluing a nut with the right thread on the edge of HiLight.
I just bought a new Androidmobile. If you use the full functionality such as GPS, the battery does not last for many hours. If today’s modern mobile phones should be useful, it requires finding appropriate solutions for the charging. HiLight is the perfect companion; sustainable, well thought through and robust product with many uses.
Photograph in courtesy and by Leif Josefsson