Philipp Hainke

Oktober / October - 2019

Universität der Künste Berlin

Master of Arts


POWERPLACE is a charging station designed for private and professional use. It combines an extension cord, a power bank, wireless charging and a variety of plugs and cables in one organized object. It also offers a puristic and decent piece of furniture that appears like a small side table. The fields of use range from private housing to cafés, co-working spaces, offices and hotels.

What is the Topic?

The project investigates a continually neglected area in the present living environment, the power supply. It's striking that nowadays many activities are built around or involve the use of smartphones or other digital devices, whether at home or in the office. In our daily lives we depend on these multimedia devices and therefor on electricity. Since technology has evolved faster than interior design, most people end up in a semi functioning cable mess. Here POWERPLACE offers a universal solution and establishes a new kind of furniture.

Why does it look like this?

The cylindrical foot contains a lithium battery and gives the object a good stand. The two vertical boards that form the main body give not only structural strength but also form a cover that hides the cable when it is rolled up. The gap in between the boards allows to charge bigger devices such as notebooks or tablets.. The single horizontal board in the top offers a space to lay a phone on an integrated wireless charging pad. This space is consciously kept limited to prevent the object from being filled with items to guarantee its mobility. The handle ends with USB slots in the perfect height that when charging by cable it is possible to sit as well as to stand next to POWERPLACE. Finally the space that was needed to integrate a power socket forms a hook on the other side of the body to hang the cable. The objects color code also plays an important role in the design and wants to help make the usage self-explanatory. The glowing red handle invites the user to pick up the object. All interaction points, like the USB-Port, are in a dark black, which makes them appear very clear from a distance. At the same time, the black covers the details in the complex forms and gives the object a more quiet appearance.

What is special?

The Object appears very puristic and easy, like a decent piece of furniture design. This is only possible due to the well thought out design that allows it to appear clean. In fact, the object is highly technical and contains a lot of constructive intelligence to form this organized object. The core is a not visible cable guide that forms the heart of the construction, it joins all essential components from the battery up to the handle.

What is new?

POWERPLACE forms a hybrid between a complex, technological device and a simple, restrained piece of furniture. The project does not try to replicate or to update an existing design, which leads to a new archetype in furniture.