CES 2006 Spotlight: Panasonic Oxyride Extreme Power Batteries

Panasonic last year introduced a new line of next generation batteries based upon nickel oxyhydroxide technology, which they say is a huge step up from traditional alkalines. Consumers seemed to have agreed by purchasing enough of these types of batteries in 2005 to convince Panasonic to release a ?new and improved? version at CES 2006.

The new Oxyride Extreme Power batteries, according to Panasonic spokesperson Lindsay Singler, deliver 20 percent more power than the current generation and will ship this spring in AA and AAA packs. They are already available in Japan, where reportedly they?ve been a hit.

?As devices get more sophisticated,? said Singler, ?batteries weren?t keeping up. The alkaline battery market had been stagnant for the last 40 years. Panasonic introduced the Oxyrides last year after eight years of development.?

The next generation of Oxyride batteries, according to a Panasonic press release, ?combine newly adapted cathode materials (nickel oxyhydroxide and newly-developed manganese dioxide and graphite) with advanced vacuum pouring technology that allows the volume of electrolyte in the battery to be increased, leading to a higher voltage of 1.7 volts.?

This higher voltage, said Singler, provides for the overall increase in battery life.  She explained that, in an independent lab test conducted across major battery brands and their life span in regards to the number of photos taken on a digital camera, the new Oxyrides came out on top.

?They did comparisons of Oxyrides with Duracell and Energizer,? said Singler. ?The Duracell Coppertop came out at 71 shots, the current Oxyride was 153 and the new and improved one 187.?

Singler added that while the Oxyrides will power any battery operated device well, they are especially designed for high drain devices such as digital cameras and MP3 players.