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Starbucks rolls out wireless phone charging stations

A mobile device charging on one of the ‘Powermat Spots’. Credit: Starbucks

A global coffee giant is rolling out wireless charging stations to 7,000 shops in the United States.

Stores will be equipped with ‘Powermat Spots’ - designated areas on tables and counters where customers can place their compatible device and charge wirelessly.

A mobile device charging on one of the ‘Powermat Spots’. Credit: Starbucks

Starbucks have paired with battery manufacturer Durcell and have plans to install 100,000 charging stations - around 13 per store- in the coming years.

The charging stations, which look like coasters and will be found on tables and bars, will work by magnetic induction.

Customers will be given small reusable rings that they can attach to their mobile devices to enable their use.

Pilot schemes in Europe and Asia are expected later on the year.

Starbucks UK sales fall after 16 years of growth

Starbucks signage at Starbucks, Conduit Street, central London. Credit: Press Association Images/Nick Ansell

Sales in Starbucks' UK stores fell for the first time in 16 years last year at the same time as the company faced criticism over its tax status.

In the year to September 2013, the US coffee chain saw sales fall £399m from £413m the previous year.

Starbucks said the result was not because of weakness in the business but reflected the closure of unprofitable stores.

The chain faced controversy over its tax practices when it was revealed it had told tax authorities its British arm was a loss-making business while informing investors that the subsidiary was profitable.

Starbucks move 'ringing endorsement' of London

Starbucks' decision to move its European headquarters from the Netherlands to London is a "ringing endorsement" of the capital's business environment, according to the chief executive of the London Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Colin Stanbridge.

This very positive move by Starbucks greatly reinforces London as a key global centre for business and a highly desirable location for firms to base their operations.

Creating the right environment for businesses to flourish is essential to London competing at an international level and we are delighted that Starbucks has given the capital a ringing endorsement.

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