If you’ve been in a major hotel or conference center lately, you’ve likely seen a Kube, a small charging device for any smartphone or tablet, often in the form of a bedside alarm clock. While their main customers are in the “hospitality” industry, anyone can purchase one of these Kube Systems Clocks.
There are two models, and each comes in two colors – black or white. The slightly lower priced clock has attached retractable cables for charging devices using Apple Lighting, Apple 30 pin, or Micro USB connections – such as used by most Android devices. There are two additional USB ports for charging with your own cable. The Kube clock pairs with your phone by Bluetooth to play audio over its speakers, or you can plug in an audio cable. A slightly more expensive model has all of the above plus wireless charging, also known as Qi (pronounced “chee”), where you place a compatible device on top of the Kube and the battery is charged by electrical induction. Of course, it’s also an alarm clock, although it must be reset every day. If, like many working folks, you keep a regular schedule, having to reset the alarm every day is a bit of an annoyance. But remember this was designed for hotel rooms – and the next guest may not want to be awakened at 4:30 am for a workout or early plane flight because that guest forgot to check the alarm clock.
The Kube clock would work just as well at home – charging both you and your bedmate’s devices, or on an office desk, charging your smartphone and tablet, as well as offering a visitor a quick boost. While the Kube is not a clock radio, most smartphones either have a built in timer to allow you to go to sleep to music or an app for that, so you can set the phone’s alarm to wake you to music.
At the moment, the Kube clock is available only direct: $179 for the model with wireless charging, $149 for the one without.