STOWE, Vt. (WCAX) We've probably all experienced a dead cellphone battery at the worst time. It happens more often when we're out in the cold weather. Now, a Stowe woman's Made in Vermont pouch is keeping cellphone battery levels high and frustration levels low.
Head to the front counter at In Company in Stowe and you'll notice an accessory that you wouldn't normally see in a women's boutique.
"I think the packaging draws them right to it and it's a conversation starter," said the store's Devon Williams.
The product is called Therma-Phone. It's a pouch for your cellphone specifically designed to prolong the life of the phone's battery in freezing temperatures.
"The whole message of when I thought of this was safety," said Sherri Hermanowski, the former Stowe ski patroller who came up with the idea.
When people were brought in off the mountain, they'd come into the first aid station and go to call a friend or family member.
"They'd go to pull their phones out and their phone wasn't working," Hermanowski said.
That's because the cold got to it first. Two years ago, Hermanowski consulted with her friend Yvette Randolph and that's how Therma-Phone was born.
"She would make the prototypes, we'd pick a fabric, she'd make it and then we would test them," Hermanowski said.
Therma-Phone's test data shows that a normal cellphone dies after just 40 minutes when the temperature is at minus-1. That same phone at the same temperature lasts four hours in a Therma-Phone case.
The Therma-Phone survivial kits, which are $40, come with two heat packs which increase the battery life even further-- up to 7-8 hours.
"You don't have to be without your phone, especially in a dangerous situation, or when it comes to finding your children at the end of the day," Hermanowski said.
You can find Therm-Phone in stores near ski resorts throughout Vermont, from Stowe Mountain to Mad River Glenn and Sugarbush. There's also a website.
"This has been an exciting journey for me and I'm very proud of it, and that it has gotten to this point, and hopefully we'll continue to grow," Hermanowski said.
A fashionable outfit for your phone, providing a longer battery life which could potentially save a life.