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Starbucks to Install Wireless Charging for Your Gadgets, Only Not Sure Which Ones


Powermat_at_Starbucks_620x493A great technology is coming to you via Starbucks. Yes, you heard it right, the guys that supply the ever-so-needed dose of caffeine to billions around the world. Alongside with your favorite coffee, you would now be able to purchase not only that tasty-looking muffin, but also a receiver ring that will allow you to wirelessly charge your electronic devices while sipping that espresso.

For starters, the extra will be available to all Starbucks coffee shops in San Francisco Bay, but by the end of 2015, the company promises to provide the service to every one of their customers across the country.  All plans are already finalized. Each store will have a minimum of ten designated charging spots, equipped with powermats.

Starbucks have also decided to implement the Power Matters Alliance, a.k.a PMA, charging standard. Now, here is the place where the issue becomes a bit more tricky. Currently, there are only two active standards- Starbucks’ choice PMA, which uses Duracell Powermats, and Qi, the technology found in most NOKIA, HTC, Soni and Samsung phones. PMA has been installed at numerous locations since 2012, it does not support any of the above mentioned phones, while Qi can charge them all, but it cannot be seen anywhere.

Daniel Schreiber, the president of Powermat Technologies, ensures that this is about to change very soon.  He states that it is only a matter of time before other companies follow the example of Asus PadFone X, which is the first one with an integrated PMA technology inside. Samsung is also not far behind, offering a replacement of the back cover of their phones with one that is compatible with PMA.

But the big question, of course is what is Apple going to do. Well, Duracell is now selling a Duracell PowerCase cover for iPhone 5S on Apple’s website, but the tech giant has not yet committed to any wireless power standard. I have a slight suspicion that the standard they pick would be the winner in this fight.

In any case, no one has interest in prolonging the issue for too long. I am sure that a common solution will be found very soon, especially because every one of these tech giants wants their customers to be happy and satisfied.

Image (c) CNET

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