Portable devices chain consumers to coffee shops

While some devices, like a dying cellphone, require only a few minutes of charging to regain short-term use, most devices, like laptops, take much longer. It is not uncommon for users of electronics with more ravenous appetites to camp out for hours near an electrical outlet. In some cases, those staking a claim do so by plugging in a device – even a $2,000 laptop – only to leave it unattended while fetching a $4 coffee.

The battery problem lives on.