Last year, a study done by smartphone case maker mophie in UK has revealed something amazing, although not surprising. Nearly half of Britons can only remember three telephone numbers because they are so reliant on storing information on their mobile phone. The research also showed that 92% of British people would feel stressed if their smartphone battery ran out of juice. It seems smartphone makes people dumb (*grin*).
From the above 92% stressful people, 61% said they would become frustrated, while 25% said they would feel panicked. The survey, which consists of 872 Britons, also found that 81% of people said running out of battery on their smartphone had led to a bad experience, such as missing important calls or unable to access required information. If this survey is not enough to convince you about people becoming smartphone’s slaves, reads on.
Another survey done by Aruba Networks showed that nearly a fifth of 1,500 students surveyed spend over five hours a day online, and they would rather give up coffee, sex and eating out, than their beloved smartphones. As smartphone has become the most important part of human’s life, businesses have no choice but to adapt to such “smartphone civilization”. One of them is none other than Starbucks.
Last year in November 18, Starbucks US had unveiled Powermat wireless charging in approximately 200 of its stores in the San Francisco Bay Area. It was the first step in Starbucks strategic business plan to offer Powermat throughout its U.S. locations. Yesterday (January 20, 2015), the Seattle-based coffeehouse chain launched the same wireless charging zones in 10 central London Starbucks stores.
The completion of the initial 10 installations in the central London stores, scheduled by the end of January 2015, cover the following places: Princes Street, Kingsway, Wardour Street, Pentonville Road, Harewood Place, Berkeley Street, Great Portland Street, Moorgate, Fleet Street, and Euston Tower. The ‘Powermat Spots’ are wirelessly connected to the Powermat-Network Cloud, providing real-time health monitoring of each Spot and venue.
Customers simply collect a “Ring” at the till point, connect it to their phone and place their device on tables and counters that have Powermat wireless charging technology built in – a circular “Spot” marked as the Powermat Spot. The wireless charging deployment is part of Starbucks continued commitment to investing in digital innovations that improve its customers’ overall in-store experience, another fancy words for locking in customers.
If you really fancy having one of those “Rings” for home wireless charging, Starbucks stores do offer Duracell Powermat “Rings” for purchase at US$9.99, or loan that instantly upgrade any phone to wireless charging compatibility. Hence, it can be borrowed and returned on per-visit basis. Duracell Powermat is the joint venture between Procter & Gamble’s Duracell brand and Powermat Technologies.
Within this year alone, Starbucks is committed to deploy the same convenience to the rest of its stores in Europe and Asia. Israeli-based Powermat wireless charging technology has been adopted by the Power Matters Alliance (PMA), of which its members include Samsung, LG, Freescale, HTC, Broadcom, Blackberry, Texas Instruments and many others. Beside Starbucks, other adopters include McDonalds, Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf, Madison Square Garden, and dozens of airports around the world.
While you may cheer that the frequent fightings for powerpoints at Starbucks would be over, there’s a security issue though. Since you would be connected to the Powermat-Network Cloud, there’s a concern about your private information being gathered and stored by Starbucks.
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