back to article Hey, Silicon Valley milky drink fans: Starbucks intros wireless charging

Another round of coffee* shops are being fitted for wireless charging; this time in Silicon Valley, as the third wireless charging standard grabs a little more retail estate. Starbucks, who will be wiring up tables in a selection of its Californian drinking holes, has already endorsed charging tech from The Power Matters …

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Ubiquitous

I predict that when it is ubiquitous, everybody will love it. At the moment people are apathetic because it is not.

If you want to charge your phone you have to hope that it is the right standard and whomever is supplying the charging point accepts the power charges (I assume coffee prices shall rise to cover this).

Then last but not least, there needs to be more than 3 coffee shops in the world offering it (there may be more but I am apathetic) and not just coffee shops. It may be somewhat useful at home but I see its most use when your in the car, on a train etc. where you do not always have a ready supply for that almost dead phone / pad.

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Headmaster

Re: Ubiquitous

whomever???

Hint: you wouldn't say "the person whom is supplying...".

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The biggest problem with wireless charging, as far as I can see, is that you can't really use your device whilst it's charging.

In the car, you can quite easily use your phone as a sat nav device, sat in a cheap cradle, plugged in with a USB cable. You'd need a cradle that was able to charge in order to do that.

Another big battery draining activity, playing games, also needs you to be able to pick up your phone, tablet, in order to comfortably play. Having it laid flat on a desk would be awkward, and impossible for games that use the accelerometer.

That other, little-mentioned, function of a smartphone, making and receiving telephone calls, would also be a little inconvenient if the phone had to remain laid on the table. It would make standing outside Starbucks, pointing and laughing at the lattemochachocofrappocino set, talking with their ears stuck to the table, more fun though.

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Almost there ...

If Starbucks could just look after my internet and power requirements, I'd be happy to make my own coffee --- as long as I was allowed to turn the roaster off when I wanted, rather than burning the beans for hours, as per policy.

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Re: Almost there ...

Hell, I would be happier to bring my own coffee..

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Re: Almost there ...

I wonder if San Jose Starbucks locations have Tim Hortons Clone Starbucks Blonde Roast.

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Happy

Hmmm I wonder

given that Apple have a pretty bog presence in SV then I just wonder if this is in preparation for this feature to be added in a future iPhone.

After all, aren't Fanboi's the only people who drink some of the more esoteric types of drink that Starbucks sells?

not being able to use the phone shouldn't matter to them. According to many here, they are just poseurs who love the shiny-shiny although I know of a few Galaxy owners who are just as bad.

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Time to charge?

Does anyone know the charging rate of these wireless chargers, compared to the 'traditional' micro-usb on the end of a cable method? My main use of charging is to plug it it when the battery gets down to about 75% and leave it connected until I need to walk around with it. If I want to make some phone calls, I can still use the phone when it's charging, as long as I stay sitting down.

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If only Edison wasn't a total arse we would all have wireless power now!!!

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WTF?

why the downvote?

* historical accuracy?

* inappropriate language (it's before the Cameron watershed)?

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Thumb Up

yes, but

we got a cool electric roadster instead, and business guru cred for Elon so he can run the first manned Mars landing mission in peace without too many doofuses slagging him.

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Re: why the downvote?

well actually Nikola Tesla was working on a tower that would provide electricity to the world and was stopped simply because he couldn't fund this and the electricity companies released they couldn't actually charge for it either!

Edison actually tried hard to discredit Tesla a number of times, he actually told the US military that a particular invention of his had no practical use (Radar!!!)

http://www.activistpost.com/2012/01/10-inventions-of-nikola-tesla-that.html

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nikola_Tesla

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This is all so confusing

So Google are in PMA yet they release a Nexus 4 which uses Qi. Samsung uses Qi but now they're on board with PMA. What the hell is going on? I feel relieved to have not bothered buying a wireless charging stand for my Nexus 4 if it's ultimately obsolete.

Anyway I don't see any good of Starbucks encouraging people to leave their phones on tables.

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Insider information?

Is this a hint that Starbucks has an early lead on info about which charging standard that Apple plans to invent, er, adopt?

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Anonymous Coward

The alliance is bound to fail. If they cannot even get a logo together, that really says something about how it is run. They probably cannot agree on anything and thus the specs will never be ready. Most companies view Qualcomm as a predator based upon their past behavior. They like to lock people in, be the only supplier and will only license their intellectual property far higher than what it should be going for.

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Anonymous Coward

Got milk ?

"Hey, Silicon Valley milky drink fans .."

I give up. I've searched the article but I can't find a reference to anything that would prompt this tag line. I assume I'm culturally ignorant. What have I missed ?

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walk into a Starbuck's

Said corp makes much of its profit on drinkies that consist of a bit of coffee-esque liquid mixed with a fair amount of dairy; lattes are an example.

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Fond memories of my Pre

The Pre had an awesome wireless charging setup -- no he-man bulky external case, just an alternate back that didn't alter the phone's profile and a simple featureless circular charging platform. Even orientation wasn't a big issue, as magnets kept the phone on the platform, in the correct orientation. Come home, plop down the Pre, and well before morning you phone's recharged!

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Anonymous Coward

Re. wireless charging

I have some experience with this.

Evanescent wave (close range) wireless charging is wavelength dependent so at 60 kHz (used in Wii chargers) and 120 kHz (used in some Pre chargers etc) it has to be within 5" of the charge station.

The losses are a lot less but resistance loss in the coils and capacitor(s) account for a lot, as does simple inverse square law.

One option which is being explored is to use very long wave ie 2um waves which are deep infrared.

These are basically eye safe and the heat aversion response means that people can't get injured.

Also relevant, most Powerbeam-like setups basically use a solar cell as the Rx which is tuned to the exact wavelength being transmitted so the efficiency can be at least 3 times normal ie 52% and any wasted energy that is absorbed can be converted by a vacuum thermoelectric cell on the back of the panels.

These cells are in common use, last time I checked they were looking into using photonic lattice technology which works equally well for extracting and collecting light though in this case a cone like structure like a fly's eye would be more effective for collecting a diverging beam.

Yet another approach I am working on at home involves using a diamagnetic Rx coil, the idea here is that a bismuth coil electroplated with silver and nickel is a lot more effective at collecting weak electromagnetic waves than a conventional silvered copper coil and is somewhat easier to adjust, as any metallic objects

near or over the coil don't detune it thanks to the diamagnetic bismuth offsetting the effect.

AC/DC

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Coat

This is not....

...the Starbucks you are looking for.

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