Ever heard of a kitchen countertop that doubles as a wireless charging station? Probably not, but they're coming to the kitchen of the future.
At the 2014 Stockholm Furniture and and Light Fair, DuPont and Powermat Technologies presented not just charging countertops, but also bedside tables and office desks that can charge compatible devices without a plug. DuPont, makers of the popular Corian solid surface material, and Powermat, which leads the wireless power industry, designed this furniture to be a perfect marriage of beauty and functionality.
The secret behind the tech is the Power Matters Alliance (PMA), a global industrial coalition founded by Powermat and Procter & Gamble to create standards of compliance for wireless charging technology. The goal is to ensure that wireless charging tech that works in the U.S. is compatible worldwide. If you've been in an airport in the past year or two, chances are that you've seen a PMA-compliant "wireless charging station" in one of the terminals—just one public-facing way the technology is spreading.
The secret behind the looks isn't really a secret at all. Corian is already a well-known countertop option among architects and interior designers, and is frequently praised for its stain resistance, malleability, expansive color choices, and complete absence of visible joints.
The furnishing solutions offer a way for consumers to add seamless, subtle high-tech convenience to their home. In the house of the near future, charging your phone or tablet could be as simple as leaving it on the table next to your bed.
Images: Dupont Corian