This Game Boy-Like Handheld Uses No Batteries

Engage Game Boy with no Batteries
A perpetual gaming experience.
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This handheld Game Boy-like project was created by a team of developers consisting of Jasper de Winkel, Josiah Hester, Przemysław Pawełczak, and Vito Kortbeek. Unlike the original handheld sensation of the late '80s and early '90s, this device uses a 3D-printed case and requires no batteries to operate.

Well, technically it has a battery inside, but the battery isn't something you recharge with a cable or replace. By exposing the solar panel modules to the sun or mashing buttons, enough current will draw to power the device. The project is officially known as "Engage."

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The handheld weighs just half as much as the original Game Boy console. It looks very similar to the original and even plays Game Boy games using emulation techniques in congruence with "energy harvesting and intermittent-computing technology." According to the team, this project would not have been feasible four to five years ago.

To recharge the power cells inside, the handheld's solar panel rows must be exposed to sunlight. Pressing the buttons will also provide enough power to run the device for about 10 seconds.

Playing on the handheld isn't exactly a user-friendly experience. Because of the constant intermittent power, saving isn't an option. However, this project is a really cool proof of concept that can potentially be explored as a modern power sourcing method.

If you want to read more about the Engage project, check out this exclusive interview with the team on CNET.