The xWallDock, a new Kickstarter project, aims to remove cord clutter in homes filled with smartphones and tablets. The solution is elegantly simple: Simply replace the face plate from an existing electrical outlet with an xWallDock, which creates a combination device charger and dock for any wall in your home.
I find the design to be clever as it doesn’t rely on any new or unproven technologies for you to risk your money on. Instead, the plastic face plate adds the needed hardware parts to turn any standard electrical outlet found in the U.S., Canada or much of South America into a more useful charging station. This shouldn’t surprise, since Avi Cohen, the brains behind the xWallDock, is an industrial designer.
Cohen got the idea when it became apparent that his family of five was challenged by the various cables and cords to charge all of their mobile devices. With the xWallDock, Cohen has solved that problem with the addition of a useful dock function, saying:
“It could be mounted to the kitchen backsplash and used to listen to music and browse recipes, or it could be placed next to the headboard of the bed or in the living room, remaining in the same spot. There will be no long wires laying around on the floor, no wires stretched from the outlet to the dresser and no mess.”
Take a peek at the introductory video and you’ll see how this product could be useful. I know in my house there are plenty of spots I could use one of these; next to my bed, in the kitchen and even in the family room where our uncharged devices tend to collect in a pack.
Cohen is starting off with support for Apple’s 30-pin iOS port, and of course, newer iOS devices will use Apple’s Lightning port. That means an Apple adapter would be needed during the first run of docks, but Cohen is planning two additional production runs: one for the new Lightning dock and one for micro-USB devices such as phones or tablets that run Android or Windows Phone.
If the xWallDock hits the $27,000 goal that Cohen has set, the first orders are expected to be fulfilled in February 2013. At this early point in the project, it has only raised about 10 percent of the goal, so there’s plenty of early bird opportunity. A face plate with two outlet cutouts starts at $15 and all of the dock products include a USB charger and short USB cable for device charging.