Customer Stories / Starbucks and Other Retail Outlets Offer Wireless Phone Charging with Digi Technology

Starbucks and Other Retail Outlets Offer Wireless Phone Charging with Digi Technology

The custom XBee Gateway ensures Powermat’s network remains secure, saving the company valuable time by simplifying the deployment process.

Powermat-Content-Calendar-wo-October-19_East-Coast-Facebook-(1).jpgSmartphones have become an essential part of our lives, from conducting business on the go, to staying in touch with family and friends, to keeping ourselves entertained in transit. But with so many uses, it can often be difficult to keep your phone powered up throughout the day.

Powermat is addressing this all too familiar challenge by providing wireless charging stations where people can conveniently power up their phones without having to carry around a clunky charger or find that last remaining wall outlet.

Whether you’re sitting down for a cup of coffee at Starbucks or waiting at the gate for your next flight, Powermat is helping create a wireless world where smartphone users never have to worry about a dying battery again.

Powermat is partnering with some of the largest retail brands to deploy Powermat Charging Spots around the world. Its accompanying application, The Powermat App notifies users when their battery is running low and shares the nearest and most convenient wireless charging station.

 

Business Challenge

Connecting thousands of networks distributed around the world while integrating data into an end-user application is no small task. Powermat was in need of a technology partner with wireless expertise and an easy to-deploy solution that would enable them to administer their global network from anywhere.

The primary challenge was to find a simple solution that required minimal configuration to deploy, while providing a secure connection to the cloud. This functionality would enable the company to integrate data into the Powermat App, so partner businesses that install its Powermat Charging Spots could connect with customers who use the wireless charging stations.

Solution

Each wireless charging station is embedded in tabletops and connected on-site with ZigBee technology.

The XBee Gateway provides Powermat with secure connectivity to its cloud-based system, and ZigBee technology makes the network simple to deploy and reliable. The XBee Gateway also enables the integration of data, such as the location of each Charging Spot, into the Powermat App so users can search for and find a nearby location when they are in need of a charge. Businesses are also able to offer targeted promotions via the Powermat App.

Powermat chose ZigBee technology for the local wireless communication. At this scale, ZigBee is cost effective and easy to deploy and manage since it only requires a single takeout point per retail location via the XBee Gateway.powerspot_w_White_Ring_1024x1024.png

To make deploying a global network of devices as simple as possible, Digi also created a custom SKU of the XBee Gateway. This new variant of the XBee Gateway ships with the Powermat logo, additional security features, and Powermat’s custom Python application. And, since this is a new product, Digi worked hand-in-hand with Powermat to acquire certifications around the globe.

Results

Today, Powermat is the fastest growing wireless charging network in the world. The company currently provides Powermat Charging Spots in London, New York, Boston and San Francisco, partnering with many of the world’s leading brands, including Starbucks, McDonald’s, Dupont, General Motors and select university campuses.

The custom XBee Gateway ensures Powermat’s network remains secure, saving the company valuable time by simplifying the deployment process. Cloud connectivity also enables Powermat to provide value-added services, such as business promotions, through the Powermat App, so end-users never have to worry about running out of battery again.

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