OK, let me be very clear here. You can now wirelessly charge your phone at Starbucks if you live in the San Francisco Bay Area. But wait. Everyone else—don’t leave yet! It’s coming to your location, too. Eventually.
Duracell Powermat and Starbucks announced that they have begun a national rollout of Powermat wireless charging in Starbucks beginning with stores in San Francisco’s Bay Area.
From WiFi and the in-store Digital Network to mobile payment and digital music downloads, Starbucks hopes to anticipate their customers’ needs and provide solutions. Rather than hunting around for an available power outlet, you’ll now be able to seamlessly charge your device while enjoying your favorite coffee or a Venti Iced Skinny Hazelnut Macchiato with Sugar-Free Syrup, Extra Shot, Light Ice, and No Whip.
The Powermat Spots in Starbucks are the result of almost a decade of scientific research spanning material sciences, magnetic induction, and mesh networking. Some newer devices (like AT&T’s Asus and Kyocera Hydro Vibe) have compatible technology either embedded or available as an added feature to give consumers the freedom to charge wirelessly. For phones that aren’t compatible, Starbucks locations are loaning “rings” that can be plugged into any smartphone. These “rings” are also available for purchase for ten bucks, allowing any phone-bearing customer to use the wireless charging stations.
Powermat Spots comply with the open standard set by the PMA, resulting in a growing universe of devices and accessories that will charge seamlessly in Starbucks. This endeavor is a critical step in Duracell’s vision to make dead battery anxiety a thing of the past.
Stores will be equipped with ‘Powermat Spots’ – designated areas on tables and counters where customers can place their compatible device and charge wirelessly. The number of available Powermat Spots vary depending on the size of the store, but stores generally have about eight of them. Select Starbucks stores in Boston and San Jose offer Powermat Spots already, and the companies will continue to expand to additional major markets in 2015, with a full national rollout planned over time. Initial pilots in Europe and Asia are expected within the year.
So get excited, but don’t leave your phone chargers at home just yet!
Do these added perks make you more inclined to frequent Starbucks? Comment below, or email your comments to [email protected].
Filed Under: M2M (machine to machine)