The iPhone, iPad, and iPod users on the go will be able to receive a free boost at a handful of new public solar charging stations in New York City with more set to appear across the city over the coming weeks. Goal Zero, AT&T, and Pensa collaborated on the new Street Charge stations, which feature three 15-watt solar panels. Each pole has six USB connectors, including 30-pin and Lightning plugs for Apple devices. The charging stations also include a micro-USB plug for non-Apple devices as well as three female USB plugs for users who may have a charging cable on them.
As of today, the first official charging stations became live at Brooklyn Bridge Park’s Pier 1, Fort Greene Park, Governor’s Island, and Riverside Park Pier 1, according to AT&T. Another station is scheduled to open tomorrow at Union Square. AT&T has said that it will deploy roughly 25 Street Charge stations by the end of the summer, serving all five of New York City’s boroughs. The inclusion of a 168 watt-hour battery will allow users to charge their devices even after sundown.
The program grew out of the Superstorm Sandy disaster, when AT&T discovered that users were flocking to its generator-powered distribution centers to charge their phones. This led AT&T to partner with Goal Zero and Brook-based design firm Pensa to develop what it’s pitched as a “sustainable charging solution.” According to President and CEO of Goal Zero, Joe Atkin;
We’re excited to team up with AT&T and Pensa to help make New York a little greener and solar power a little more accessible. Nearly half of all Americans own a smartphone and the amount of time we spend on handheld devices has increased dramatically. All too often, we hear the dreaded low-battery beep and it happens at the most inconvenient times. Street Charge will fix that.
Marco Perry, the co-founder of Pensa said the following regarding the topic:
Partnering up with Goal Zero is a great match for us. We’re looking to create something that complements its surroundings and invites people to hang out and recharge. We have also found that where people gather, opportunities develop for street vendors and retail, and neglected urban areas come alive.
Source: PC Magazine