AT&T has partnered with Starbucks to make wireless charging areas available at Starbucks cafes with which customers can easily charge their phones without their traditional cords.
Although wireless charging of devices had been introduced years ago, people have been reluctant to use such form of charging. Nonetheless, AT&T and Starbucks seek to increase the popularity of this power technology by providing wireless charging starting with 200 Starbucks coffee shops in the U.S.
Beginning with cafes within the San Francisco Bay Area, the wireless charging service is expected to extend to other American locations.
With technology provided by Power Matters Alliance, a partner of AT&T and Starbucks, wireless charging will make use of magnetic induction. As users place their device on a surface, a magnetic field will be generated through electrical current. Consequently, the resulting voltage will be capable of powering the device.
Among Starbucks shops, wireless charging will be incorporated into the tables and bars for individuals to easily power up their phones while sitting and waiting.
Only certain devices will work with wireless charging. Nonetheless, incompatible phones can still make use of wireless charging by plugging a ring into an iPhone or Android handset and positioning this on the charging surface.
Eager customers, however, may put forward criticisms of such form of charging. For instance, wireless charging typically takes a longer time to power up a device as compared to charging using traditional cords.
Contrary to its name, wireless charging still makes use of a wire with which a charging mat is connected to a power outlet.
Aside from Starbucks' coffee shops, AT&T has stated that it has also been planning to offer wireless charging among restaurants, hotels and airports, among others. According to Jeff Howard, executive officer in the carrier's mobile device department, AT&T seeks to expand from its retail stores and into other relevant outlets.
"This is not something that's going to happen overnight, but it's going to become more and more a part of consumers' mind-sets as they get comfortable with this type of technology," Howard explained.