After I wrote that title it occurred to me it’s kind of tongue-in-cheek, but it still works for me. Starbucks, as the joke goes, used “bucks” as part of its name because of the insanely high price they charge for a cup of coffee. But then they sweeten the deal with free Wi-Fi access while you’re there, and rarely do they try to hurry you along. Now they’re adding another feature that will make it even easier to spend your entire day sitting at a table getting your caffeine buzz…wireless charging mats!

It started as a test program in some of the Boston locations, and after positive response is expanding to ten locations in Silicon Valley. There are plans in the works to extend the feature to other busier city locations as well, and if it works out for them I’m sure it won’t be long before every Starbucks location has them. I’m not a huge fan of their coffee, but this definitely tips the scales in their favour.

What they’ve done is embed Duracell Powermats at regular intervals into their tabletops. Which means if you happen to own a device that’s capable of wireless charging, all you have to do is set it down and your battery will be replenished. No more vying for the tables near the outlets, no more tripping over cords stretched across the walkway (causing you to dump your newly-frothed cup of caffeinated joy). The mats comply with the Power Matters Alliance (PMA), which is the most popular standard in North America right now, so odds are good you’ll win. Of course, if you don’t own a device that’s capable of wireless charging, you’re stuck with the same old cord and outlet, but as we replace our gadgets odds are good they’ll all have wireless charging abilities.

If you’re in Boston or Silicon Valley, you already win. The rest of us will just have to wait. And hope these come to a location near us soon.


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