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January 21, 2015

Starbucks now offers caffeine fix with wireless charging

Starbucks rolls out Powermat wireless charging technology in initial UK trial.

By Amy-Jo Crowley

Coffee drinkers in London will now have free access to wireless charging in 10 Starbucks coffee shops by the end of the month.

The coffee chain announced that it has installed wireless charging pads across Great Portaland Street, Pentonville Road, Euston Tower, Harewood Place, Princes Street, Kingsway, Wardour Street, Berkeley Street, Moorgate and Fleet Street.

The system, which works on iOS, Android and Window devices, uses a magnetic wireless charging ring that users connect to their phone before placing it onto the charging mat.

Users can either borrow them from the branches or purchase their own charger for £9.99.

Ian Cranna, VP marketing & category, Starbucks EMEA, told CBR: "We are always looking to make the environment here at Starbucks a better place for customers."

"Power on a mobile device is a real stress for people. What this enables us to do is to provide easy power access to people and top the power on their handheld device in a store. It removes the stress and it continues to provide a service to technology that positions us continuously as an innovator in that space."

The announcement comes after Starbucks rolled out the service in 2,000 coffee shops across the US in June last year.

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Cranna said: "I think the biggest challenge that we’re coming across is that we’ve got lots of different furniture types across our stores in London…and figuring out how to get the actual charging mat into the furniture is a challenge."

Carlo Chiarello, Chief Solutions Officer, Powermat, added: "We are excited to bring Powermat wireless charging to the UK on the heels of our very successful rollout in the San Francisco market."

"As Powermat continues to deploy wireless charging across the United States and expands beyond US borders, Starbucks customers are among the first to benefit from this new convenience and added value."

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