The number of devices we own is multiplying at an uncontrollable rate. A recent study by Strategy Analytics predicts that there will be a staggering 33 billion connected devices by 2020, and the number of connections per person will double to roughly 4.3.
Round-the-clock connectivity is now so deeply rooted in our day-to-day lives that a new ‘phobia’ has been created; Nomophobia – the fear of being without or having access to a mobile device.
A recent study into mobile device habits by MK Electric firmly demonstrates just how chained Britons are to their smartphones and tablets.
The figures are particularly pronounced amongst Millennials, showing that over a quarter have ‘lost contact’ with people while on the road due to a loss of battery power. The survey also shows losing battery power can make Millennials feel ‘very frustrated’ (39 per cent) and anxious (26 per cent).
Device proliferation and ‘Nomophobia’ aren’t just consumer problems; they also represent big challenges for business.
Whether its hoteliers trying to attract and retain guests, educators looking to deliver a first-class service to high schools or airports making an effort to win the loyalty of regular travellers, the need to provide convenient mobile charging for patrons is vital. If it’s a straight-up decision between an airport coffee shop covered in handy, USB charging modules or one without; there’s no contest, is there?
The vast majority of mobile devices rely on USB power to keep them going. If schools, hotels, shops and airport lounges take the easy step of installing USB charging solutions on-site, they will instantly make their premises, and by extension their services, more attractive to their target audience.
Hands down, Millennials and business travellers alike are more likely to choose the easiest option that lets them get on with their work or post and tweet to their hearts content.
Traditionally the most popular form of USB charging has been the standalone module. However, MK Electric has added a second option to the mix; USB ports integrated into their existing standard twin socket.
This allows businesses to integrate USB charging functionality into their existing power points, taking advantage of existing wiring and circuitry.
In addition, solutions like the MK Electric USB Integrated Socket allow four devices to be charged at once – via two plugs and two USBs.
Another important innovation is the advent of Dynamic Device Recognition (DDR), coined by MK Electric; a ‘smart’ approach to charging devices via USB which ensures that whichever device is plugged in, charges in the most optimum way.
DDR works because different devices – a Samsung or an iPhone, a smartphone, tablet or 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 with an iPad. DDR ensures that whatever make or model you are 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.
The result is more juice, in a shorter space of time.
In a world where the number of devices owned is only growing and our attachment to those devices is borderline excessive, businesses must prioritise investing in USB charging solutions to gain a competitive advantage.