Nadine Deery, retail channel marketing manager, Honeywell, on the retail opportunity of offering USB charging
Picture the scene. You wake up in your hotel room at 7am, adrenaline pumping and pulse already racing ahead of your big meeting. Instinctively you reach out for your smartphone. After a second or two, it dawns on you: you forgot to charge your devices overnight. You need your tablet to make last minute changes to the presentation, your mobile phone to navigate your way to the client’s offices. You try to mentally calculate whether you’ll have enough ‘juice’ to get through the day.
What about the time you arrived at the airport, smuggly carrying your iPhone ready to show your mobile boarding pass. You’re not carrying any travel documents because it’s all saved on your trusty iPhone, your flight number, seat number, hotel address. You stroll into the terminal building, pull out your phone then freeze: your battery down to its final bar. “Please, just a few more minutes,” you beg. “Just stay on for long enough to get me through the morning.” You frantically tap on the device, desperately trying to retrieve everything before the ‘wheel of doom’ appears.
At times like this, every bar counts. It’s that last ounce of juice that allows you to complete the tasks you need to, before the phone switches off and refuses to resuscitate. In those crucial moments, a charger you used earlier in the day has the opportunity to be a hero, or a villain.
In fact, it is this ‘Every Bar Counts’ philosophy that is encouraging a whole host of businesses to adopt USB charging technology; from airports to hotels, retail outlets to universities. These organisations increasingly understand that failing to provide their customers with a quick, easy way to charge their devices on the go is a very easy way to lose loyalty. After all, if you had to decide between a coffee shop, a hotel room or a shop with a charging outlet and one without, which one would you choose?
It’s a no brainer, on important days when our device is low on battery; the majority of us would pick an inferior coffee or a second-rate snack, in exchange for somewhere to perch and pump the vital charge into our phone that will get us through the day. By embracing USB charging sockets, these types of businesses are significantly increasing the likelihood that a customer, a flier, a student will pick their establishment over someone else’s. Like free Wi-Fi, in a year’s time, expect USB charging to become ‘table stakes’, commonplace in almost every establishment.
The most enlightened businesses will go even further. If every bit of every bar counts, your customers will appreciate any last bit of extra charge you can pump into their device before they run off to their next engagement. Cue an innovative new approach to USB charging – coined Dynamic Device Recognition (DDR) by MK Electric – which makes sure whichever device is plugged in, it charges in the optimum way. Its subtleties mean it is capable of optimally and efficiently charging a device more quickly than other USB charging solutions available.
DDR works because different devices – a Samsung or an iPhone, a smartphone, tablet an MP3 player – actually charge in different ways. That’s why some USB chargers can perfectly charge, say, an iPhone 5, but struggle to make inroads into an iPad. DDR ensures that whatever make or model you are a charging – Apple, Samsung, Nokia, iPad and many more – that device recognises the socket or module as it would its own charger and draws current from the USB charging socket in the way that best suits its design.
This is a possible game-changer in USB charging, with the potential to provide a powerful competitive advantage for organisations that are open to embracing it. However, for installers it also represents an excellent upsell opportunity. The best customers and the best sales relationships depend on installers providing ‘added value’ to a customer, by identifying purchases like USB charging sockets – equipped with DDR – that can give them the edge over their competitors. The MK USB charging socket is not only quick and easy to install, it is also of a much higher quality, standard and compatibility than some of the lower quality USB charging solution on the market today.
Dynamic Device Recognition, a core part of the future of USB charging, presents installers and end users with a powerful investment case. If you’re still not convinced, ask yourself this: you’re out of battery – no Spotify, WhatsApp, SMS, no access to emails, voicemails or crucial documents – on a busy day of meetings and travel, and are staring at two identical cafes with two identical seats. One has a USB charging module built into the wall (with Dynamic Device Recognition, of course), the other doesn’t. Which do you choose?
I rest my case.
(A Retail Times’ sponsored article)