Charging it up with USB Sockets

A blog by Sandra Everett, Senior Marketing Manager at leading trade supplier, Electricfix.

With recent research from Deloitte suggesting seven in ten UK adults now have a smartphone and a report by eMarketer revealing that one third of the population now uses tablets, it is easy to see how many of us are reliant on USB ports for keeping our gadgets charged on a daily basis.

This growth in the prevalence of consumer technology use, such as smartphones, tablets, ereaders and digital cameras, presents a unique opportunity for qualified electricians. As most homeowners have numerous electrical items that use a USB port or a USB plug adaptor, qualified electricians can now offer them the chance to incorporate USB ports into the sockets in their homes to make re-charging even easier.

At Electricfix, we’ve responded to this demand by introducing an innovative new range of sockets, which incorporate a specially-designed USB 2.1A functionality. From industryleading brand LAP, the range complements the current decorative choices, available in brushed stainless steel, polished chrome and black nickel finishes in raised and flat profiles. To enable this socket range to be released, there have had to be significant technological developments. The initial challenges of retrofitting the USB socket into a standard socket back box have been overcome and a 35mm back box option is available.

In addition, a spacer has been developed to allow 25mm back boxes to be used too. Another challenge which was tackled during development was to include a 2.1A USB socket, instead of a lesser amperage. As the 2.1A USB socket requires more power, it creates considerably more heat, which needs to dissipate. This has been achieved through the development process to ensure the safety of the new socket range.

As a result of this extensive research and development, we’re now able to offer an LAP 2 gang switched socket, which includes two Type A USB sockets – with a combined 2.1A output. It is an ideal option for homeowners looking for an easy solution for charging smartphones, tablets, cameras, e-readers and other devices. It is available for retrofitting onto a 35mm back box or comes complete with an optional 10mm spacer to enable retrofitting onto a 25mm back box.

To widen the choice available for qualified electricians and to maximise their opportunities with homeowners, there are further developments currently taking place, which will see the launch of a single socket option and a version which is able to fit directly onto a 25mm back box, without a spacer required, for ease of installation.

As uptake of consumer technology continues to grow at a significant rate, there is an opportunity for qualified electricians to help homeowners build the electrical infrastructures within their homes to keep pace.

We feel it’s important for us to support qualified electricians in responding to potential growth driven by consumer trends like this. It’s for this reason that we’ve launched the range of sockets with integrated USB ports in our latest catalogue and plan to widen this range further.