Starbucks were substantially ahead of the technological curve when it introduced Wi-Fi hotspots to its coffee shops in 2001. 13 years later the Seattle chain has pushed the boundaries once more, this time offering free wireless charging in-store.
The service will only be available in shops in the San Francisco Bay area initially, but should soon expand across the USA, as well as parts of Europe and Asia. Duracell Powermat PMA technology will be embedded into tables and countertops, meaning that you simply need to lay your device down on top of it and it will begin charging.
That is, of course, if your device supports PMA wireless charging. Which… it probably doesn’t. ‘Qi’ is undoubtedly the leading force in a fragmented wireless charging market right now, and can be found inside popular handsets like the Google Nexus 5 and Nokia Lumia Icon. PMA meanwhile, despite being backed by major brands like HTC, LG and Samsung, is nowhere near as widespread – particularly as an in-built feature.
So the plus side is, if you fulfil the fairly specific criteria of both living in the San Francisco Bay Area, own a phone which either has PMA wireless charging in-built or use a PMA wireless charging case, and happen to enjoy Starbucks coffee, you’re in luck. For the other 6,999,999,999 of us though, you’ll have to excuse us if we hold off on the excitement for now.