The ARK will retail for $79.99.
Are you sick of phone charging wires clogging up your workspace? Are you tired of depending on a power socket to charge your phone wirelessly? Thanks to the ARK, a state-of-the-art charging device made by the technology company BEZALEL, you may no longer have to deal with these high-tech hassles.
“It will be better than any other chargers on the market. It must be more beautiful, easier to use, and have a better price,” said USC Viterbi alumnus and ARK co-creator Frank Wu, who graduated in May 2012 with a master’s degree in mechanical engineering.
The device, which is expected to come to market in July, charges phones through a process known as magnetic induction. All one has to do is place a cell phone on top of the ARK, and it will immediately begin charging. The wireless ARK is small enough to fit in pockets and also comes with a case for iPhones and a patch for Samsung phones.
“They act like receivers to enable wireless charging, but future iterations of phones will not require a case and patch to charge,” said Jam Isaga, one of the co-founders of Los Angeles-based BEZALEL.
ARK has generated much excitement. It took BEZALEL only five days on Kickstarter to reach the company’s fundraising goal of $35,000. Over the next 40 days, the firm took in an additional $100,000 for manufacturing, shipping and operational expenses.
ARK works well with current generation iPhones, Android devices, and even Google Nexus tablets. It comes in white and black. (Kickstarter funders, as a reward for their participation, can have it in red.)
Major players in the high-tech industry have taken notice of ARK. “Gadget Review,” an online tech website, says, “It’s easy to use, stable, reliable and fits into your everyday life – all without the need for annoying cords, making your life way simpler.”
As the team leader, USC Viterbi’s Wu cofounded BEZALEL in early 2013 with USC Viterbi materials engineering graduate Ling-Wei Tong, who is in charge of product R&D; CSU Dominguez Hills student Jam Isaga, who handles BEZALEL's sales and marketing in the U.S.; McGill University electrical engineering graduate Yao-Ting Lee, who is the strategic planner; and Academy of Art University graduate Macy Lin, who is the industrial designer. Their goal: To empower the best charging experience in the market.
BEZALEL is named after the Biblical engineer of the Ark of the Covenant. The ARK was appropriately named after the Ark itself that was said to contain the tablets of the Ten Commandments.
BEZALEL is set to release the ARK in July on the company’s website. It will sell for $79.99. In the future, BEZALEL plans to showcase the ARK at multiple electronics exhibitions.
“We are very excited about this project. We have more ideas to bring out later that will be about more than just wireless charging,” Wu said. “We believe the following five years is where wireless charging will start to find its place at the center stage of electronics and mobile devices.”