NEWS

Apple Pulls the Plug on Portable Charger Project; Refuses Use of Lightning Connector

Dec 21, 2012 05:04 AM EST by Kristyan Morgan

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Apple has pulled the plug on a Kickstarter crowd-funded project to build a portable charging station called POP, made by Edison Junior Design Labs, by refusing to license rights to its Lightning connector.

The charging station was billed as the intersection of charging design, as it could charge four devices at once. This includes both iOS and Android devices and Apple didn't want to approve a product that uses the Lightning charger alongside any other charger.

"After applying to Apple (which is now required for Lightning), we learned that they are no longer willing to approve a product that uses the Lightning charger alongside any other charger (including their own 30-pin - seriously)," Edison Junior's CEO Jamie Siminoff wrote on Kickstarter. "Just like that, POP could no longer fulfill its true promise," following which the company will be refunding the $139,170 it received for the project.

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Refunding the money means Edison Junior will be taking a hit as the company will have to absorb both credit card fees and Kickstarter fees that will amount to $11,000. "Today we asked Kickstarter for the 5% fee they collected based on the circumstances, however regardless of their decision YOU WILL RECEIVE 100% OF YOUR MONEY BACK," Siminoff wrote.

Edison Junior has been in talks with Apple since September when the company announced its Lightning connector. "We didn't get a yes or a no up front," Siminoff told Venture Beat. "But as we kept going back and forth it was clear that it was getting harder. Then, when we saw that they weren't even going to allow a Lightning connector and a 30-pin connector together, we knew it was over."

The POP was touted to be a critical product to have when natural disasters such as hurricanes affect power, as it comes with a 26,000 mAh battery that can charge up to 10 iPhones. This portable device also comes with a four dual-tip charger and is equipped with a storage compartment that's perfect for carrying various cords and power adapters, the company said on its website.

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