Ikea launches furniture that wirelessly
charges smartphones and tablets


Ikea wireless charging furniture

News: Swedish furniture giant Ikea has incorporated induction-charging stations into products from its latest collection, which will allow users to wirelessly charge their smartphones.

Lamps, bedside tables and desks in Ikea's new collection each have an integrated pad that can charge portable electronic devices simply by placing them on top.

Ikea wireless charging furniture

"Through research and home visits, we know that people hate cable mess," said Jeanette Skjelmose, Ikea business area manager for lighting and wireless charging.

"They worry about not finding the charger and running out of power," she continued. "Our new innovative solutions, which integrate wireless charging into home furnishings, will make life at home simpler."

Ikea wireless charging furniture

Wireless charging – also known as induction charging – powers up mobile devices by using an electromagnetic field to transfer energy.

When in contact, a magnetically charged coiled wire within the station induces a current in another coil located in the device, which can then use that energy to charge its own battery.

Ikea wireless charging furniture

The charging pads in Ikea's furniture were developed by specialist technology company Qi. Devices with embedded Qi technology – which currently include models by Google Nexus, HTC, Samsung and Nokia – will already by compatible with the furniture products.

For phones and tablets that aren't currently supported, such as the iPhone and Samsung Galaxy models, Ikea is also launching a range of covers to allow them to perform in the same way.

Ikea wireless charging furniture

The devices automatically begin charging when placed on the flat circular pads, which are identified by a subtle cross on the top.

These pads are integrated into the bases of simple lamps and the surface of small tables. Ikea is also releasing a stand-alone charging pad with three ports, for use in the office or family homes.

Ikea wireless charging furniture

Another charging pad has been designed to fit into the brand's existing Micke and Stuva desks.

The wireless charging range will be available at Ikea's UK stores and website from mid-April.

Ikea wireless charging furniture

Ikea's head of design Marcus Engman spoke to Dezeen about the introduction of the products to the company's range in an exclusive interview earlier this month. "We don't want to go into electronics; we want to make the home smarter," he said.

The move is just one of the changes Engman is introducing as part of his attempt to "bring the surprise back" to the brand.

Ikea wireless charging furniture

Last month, Ikea debuted a range of cork and natural-fibre homeware products by designer Ilse Crawford, with more collaborations and capsule collections planned over the coming year.

  • Alice Greenwood

    Surely not working with iPhone or Samsung will reduce their target market immensely. I’m not convinced.

    • Jens Knutson

      Qi charging is in the just-announced Galaxy S6, and lots of other existing phones. Ikea’s just ahead of the curve.

  • wat

    Is that a chopping board?

  • adamjj

    Wow. Some of those tolerances are terrible.

  • oyster

    So this is the “new Ikea”?

  • Naomi CC

    When will these be released in the US? Whatever the pros and cons of the design specifics, this is a market-leading move.

  • Joanne tee

    Awesome & interesting!

  • Stephen

    I think the designs, especially the integrated pad, need some work. The pads feel a little like an afterthought stick-in, rather then a well thought out integration with the designs. But it is an interesting development that could open up some interesting additional products.

  • YCY

    It is good idea but not practical. Most devices don’t support wireless charging.

  • Ed

    I love Ikea but this range needs to be compatible with more devices.