Microsoft Solves Backwards Battery Problem

The mad scientists at Microsoft have conjured a technology called Instaload that will allow you to put batteries into a device - in any direction. Look at the batteries in this official Microsoft image here. Madness!

The technology, announced yesterday by Microsoft, works with AA, AAA, C and D batteries. This is one of those things that seems like it should have been invented long ago. "Never again will people have to squint to see battery installation diagrams," the company boasts in the official InstaLoad press release. "The device simply works regardless if the battery is installed positive-side-up or positive-side-down."

Microsoft is seeking partners in the electronics field who will add InstaLoad to their devices.

We've checked with Microsoft about whether the technology will be incorporated into Xbox 360 controllers and will let you know if we hear anything back.

While gaming hardware technology seems to be moving toward all-internal rechargeable batteries, as seen in the DS, PSP and PS3 controllers, your standard Xbox controller still gets fed by AA batteries. Even the new slimmer Xbox comes packed with a controller that needs the things. (A rechargeable battery pack is sold separately).

Official Instaload web page


    Personally I don't find putting batteries in all that difficult now. Besides to do it you'd only need 4 diodes per battery.

      Its not an Electronic solution - Electromechanical I believe - so it is unique

    Whilst some may think this is a bit of a nothing invention, I can tell you now, this is massive.

    Having worked at Dick Smith Electronics for 3 years from 2000 - 2003, my experience in oddly having to advise people of the correct way of inserting batteries was quite often very frustrating!

    This is actually something very useful for the industry.

      Tell me about it, working as Tech support at Harvey Norman i had the same thing happen to me week after week.

      This will certainly save the time and sanity of many store techs

    I prefer using AA batteries for my 360 controller, everyone knows that them in-built rechargable ones eventually lose life and you will soon need to replace the damned thing by the 300th charge.

    I personally own a pair of turtle beaches headphones and if they were to ever die due to the inbuilt batteries dying then I can say goodbye to $150.

    There are still devices that require me to put batteries in them more than once?

    Basically everything has a rechargeable internal battery now.

    This will change lives...

    Well this sucks... it means MS is gonna continue using batteries as a means of power for their products.

    Although their battery packs are cheaply and poorly made and break within 12 months - they are still a better option than AA batteries or batteries in general.

    I would even prefer a non-changeable battery like the PS3 in the Xbox 360 controller's if it means they actually don't break! The controllers aswell are almost useless, but the fact that they are nice to hold and play games with makes up for them being crap.

    I don't care about that. but please Please PLEASE!!! invent a way for us to be able to plug a usb plug in EITHER way!!! I'm sick of:
    "damn why won't you fit, maybe its the wrong way round, no that won't fit even worse that way round, try the other way again, no.. wtf!! *crawls around to back of computer* oh god damn it, it's an esata port! ok, this one is a usb port, won't fit... wrong way round... Fu"...

    All ports should be circular. Ever had to turn around a 3.5mm headphone jack? If you buy cheap ones you will have to get both head/earphones working.

    Can I point out the 3rd party batteries for the 360 controllers work with MS's offical cord and seem to be much cheaper ($25 for 2) and seem to work better in the long run.

    So basically each Battery now has a rectification (been awhile since I did electronics may be wrong) bridge on each end?

      Circular connecotrs have speed/data limitations that flat connectors can overcome

    Confused. Does the device just take any normal battery and let you put it in any way or do you have to have a specific "Instaload" battery? I think everyone would prefer the former but the latter would be more profitable for Microsoft...

      I believe it takes any AA, AAA, C or D battery - the tech is in the battery terminals, not the batteries themselves.

    This will have massive benefits in safety. Security guards, police and ambulance officers don't have to worry about which way the batteries go in if they need to change them quickly in order to have a source of light or power for other small safety devices. That alone is worth it.

    If you've ever stood in the rain, in the middle of a pitch black night, trying to figure out the direction those 4 batteries in a maglight are supposed to go in; you'll understand this.

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