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Got a call the other night about 1:00 o'clock in the morning. I had to go into the plant to troubleshoot an electrical problem. When I finally made it back home, I crashed on the couch, worn out, too tired to even take off my boots. I lay there for a little bit, and finally fell asleep. Needing to get up at 6 the next day, I put my phone on the arm of the couch with the alarm clock set.

Couch Potato Power! Not Just For Sleeping Anymore

Steve Maurer, IME
Got a call the other night about 1:00 o'clock in the morning. I had to go into the plant to troubleshoot an electrical problem. When I finally made it back home, I crashed on the couch, worn out, too tired to even take off my boots.

I lay there for a little bit, and finally fell asleep. Needing to get up at 6 the next day, I put my phone on the arm of the couch with the alarm clock set.

When my eyes finally opened, it was 9:00 AM. My stupid phone battery went dead. If I'd only plugged it into the charger! But I was too tired to even find the charger, hidden somewhere down in my office.

I'm sure that's never happened to you, right?

I got to wishing I had one of those airport benches with power ports built in. So I did a search and you'll not believe what I found.

Power ports within arm's reach
I discovered you could get power ports that fit right into your furniture. Some units come with just USB ports, others with 110 VAC. And there were even devices that had both.

Now, these devices are mostly intended for commercial use. So if you're an installer or contractor, this may be something to offer your customers.

The devices come in both round and rectangular configurations. The round ones are designed with USB ports, with both the standard Type-A and the newer Type-C ports.

You can also get them with both a single 110-volt receptacles and two USB 5-volt power ports.

To connect to a 110 volt power source, a ten- or six-foot power cord with pass-through plug comes standard. The plug design allows you to plug into an outlet that's already in use. You just plug the other device, such as a lamp, into the power ports wall plug.

With the 10-foot cord length, you should be able to place the furniture anywhere along a wall, and even move it without unplugging if necessary.

Rectangular versions also give you the 110 and 5 volt options, and they look great.

I've seen them installed in the face of an arm rest and also on the bottom side or front of an upholstered chair.

If you're in hospitality, be hospitable!
Airports aren't the only place travelers need power. Hotels and hospitality centers must take into account the needs of their guests and visitors. Travelers, both casual and business customers, use smartphones, tablets, and other mobile devices to capture and share their experiences.

After a day on the town, these people need a place to recharge, and not just themselves. Placing power sources in your furniture satisfies that need. Not just in the sofas and chairs, either.

Other excellent options are possible for making nightstands, headboards, and counters a place your customers can power up those drained devices.

Whether it be in the guest rooms, lobby, or hotel restaurant, make it hospitable by supplying furniture power centers. Guests will love you for it.

Now … where did I put that phone charger? Oh, here it is, buried under the couch cushions. Hmm …
Photo courtesy of Legrand North America
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