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Those who often refuel at Starbucks can now recharge their phones, too. (Via Wikimedia Commons / Raysonho)
Starbucks is teaming up with Duracell Powermat to install small, circular charging pads directly into counters and tables at Starbucks and Teavana stores across the country.
San Francisco gets the first surge of charging stations, followed by more major cities across the country as early as next year. (Via Fox News) Over the next three years, more than 100,000 of these handy charging pads will reportedly be installed in Starbucks' 7,500 company-owned locations. Add 'em up, and that's about a dozen per store.
"When you're out and about the city, you're running out of battery. You're getting into Starbucks, you place your phone on the counter, and you get a charge while you're having your coffee. This is a very intuitive kind of service." (Via CNN)
Gizmodo says this is a major win for Duracell Powermat and the technology that powers its devices. The outlet points out, right now, there are two different wireless charging standards — Qi, which is backed by companies like Nokia and Samsung, and the Power Matters Alliance, or PMA, which is used by Duracell Powermats.
The Verge notes the Starbucks Powermat program could be enough to make the PMA standard more standard. Qi's technology has been embedded into a lot more smartphones than PMA's, but this could potentially change things.
And the Powermat charge pads will, of course, be a victory for Starbucks, too.
Don't have a phone that's compatible with the charging pads? No worries—CNET reports tiny, inexpensive receiver rings that plug into phones for charging on the pad can be purchased.
The coffee giant is appealing to the "techie, often young-ish clientele" with this new move, USA Today says. "Not only is Starbucks eliminating the stress, it's giving customers a cool reason to linger and buy another $4 cup of its designer coffee."
Now about that drink...