One of the cooler things about the dearly departed Palm/HP Pre range was the Touchstone charger. This was a little device that you’d prop your Pre up on and it’d charge up the battery using
magic magnetic inductive charging panels.
The LaunchPort system for the Apple iPad 2 works on a similar principle. The only difference is that the LaunchPort requires you to slip your iPad 2 into the PowerShuttle case for the technology to work.
What makes LaunchPort really cool is the ability for you to connect it to multiple magnetic charging points.
As shown in the video below, you can have a WallStation mounted in the home, so your iPad 2 can act as an expensive picture frame. Or you can have one propped up the BaseStation desktop surface mount, for doing some work or cooking, following instructions from the Epicurious app.
So as well as being a slick-looking charging system, LaunchPort has some effective practical uses.
When connected to either of the stations, you can rotate your iPad 2 360 degrees, for apps that can be viewed in portrait or landscape.
The PowerShuttle sleeves (available in black and white) are going for $149 (£94.50) while both the WallStation and BaseStation mounts are $199 (£126) each.
If you order direct, there’s extra shipping costs for orders to the UK, which starts at $99.79 (£63). So for one of the cases plus a mount you’re looking at roughly £283.50.
Or, to put it another way, that’s nearly £100 less than a new iPad 2. Expensive? Yes. Incredibly cool? Yes.