New outlet allows USB charging-A A +A
By Mia A. Aznar
Sunday, February 10, 2013
AS more people find it impossible to go places without their portable devices, the need to constantly recharge batteries becomes evident.
With this in mind, a local company has thought of a solution that can make things easier for those who constantly need to charge the batteries of their portable devices.
Enter Smart Upgrades Plus Smart Plugs, a regular electrical outlet with a USB port to allow for instant charging.
Ryan Yu of Fine Upgrades Plus said his passion for gadgets made him think of the product, saying he not only wanted to make wall sockets look cool but make the life of tech geeks like him easier.
His wall socket chargers are compatible with 99.9 percent of all USB-charged gadgets, from the popular Apple smartphones and tablets to Samsung gadgets and the cheaper phone models. They also charge USB speakers, bluetooth headsets, cameras, e-book readers, electronic cigarettes, MP3 players and battery packs.
He pointed out that almost all devices need to be charged on a daily basis and that their invention will “revolutionize” the way devices are charged.
The smart plugs work like any regular electric outlet, which means they can be installed anywhere. They also easily replace traditional outlets and installed the same way traditional outlets are installed.
Yu assured that the plugs have been tested and approved by electrical safety bodies in Japan and Taiwan. It works for both 110 and 220 volts and consumes five to 10 watts of power while charging. While on standby, it consumes 0.7 watts.
For Yu, having these sockets around makes life easier, as one no longer needs to bring a bulky charger around in case a device starts to get low on battery.
Aside from having such sockets around the house and office, he is excited about having these in commercial establishments like coffee shops, bars, and hotels where users end up staying long and could run out of battery.
Among those that have installed the smart plugs are the Citipark Hotel, Castle Peak Hotel, Islands Stay Hotels, Mango Park Hotel, Chatime Cebu, Cafe Saree and Antulang Beach Resort.
The products come in four models, some of which combine regular sockets with the USB ones.
Yu said that they are also developing other products incorporating the smart plugs just to see the potential of the product. He demonstrated by showing a loveseat and night stand with built-in sockets and cradles to hold gadgets and grooves so to wrap wires around design. They also showed a mobile charging station that could be placed around malls.
The smart plugs range from P1,050 to P1,250 and are available at Banilad Cebu Trade Center, Cebu Bionic Builders, Insotech Computers and Techithomenow.com.
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on February 11, 2013.