Adam Runquist, director of portable power for Reliant Energy, said the kiosks allow cell phone users to rent a portable charger—called an NRG Go Pack—from the touch-screen self-service kiosks. The chargers work with newer models of iPhones, including the older iPhone 4 models, as well as the majority of Android devices. Lighting connectors and micro USB cables are also available, he said.
“For us, now, it’s about taking the outlet with you,” Runquist said. “[The NRG Go Pack] makes the outlet go with you.”
The first six kiosks are located at No Label Brewing Co., Typhoon Texas—which has two kiosks—the Katy Family YMCA, the Hilton Garden Inn and Little Woodrow’s.
When using the kiosks, customers select the type of cell phone they own, choose the number of power packs they would like to rent and then pay with either a debit or credit card, he said.
Once payment is accepted, the charger pack is unlocked from the kiosk and customers can remove it. The packs can be rented for up to seven days and returned to any kiosk, he said.
If a customer decides to keep a charging pack for more than seven days, they can opt to buy it for a total of $40. The seven-day fee of $21 would be subtracted, and those who keep the charger would pay only $19 extra, he said.
In a press statement from Reliant Energy, Elizabeth Killinger, president of Reliant and NRG Retail, said the power packs will allow customers to continue to use their cell phones or mobile devices without worrying about running out of battery life.
“Everyone knows what ‘power anxiety’ feels like—that acute fear of your phone battery going to zero and being helpless,” Killinger said. “With NRG Go, people can get the charge they need when they’re away from outlets.”