Street Furniture Australia (SFA) is an Australian based company who design, manufacture and sell street furniture such as seating systems, water fountains and bike racks. SFA realised that with the growing awareness of smart cities that they too could provide greater interaction between their products and the general community.
Historically the range of products developed by SFA have not required sophisticated forms of technology however this project would introduce existing and emerging technologies to SFA products. SFA asked Scintilla to design a charging station that could be used as a standalone product or integrated into their existing and futures seating ranges.
Strategically PowerMe shifted SFA product portfolio to a more sophisticated and technical level and Scintilla assisted SFA to understand the impact this had on the organisation and new requirements from an operational, technology, market and commercial level. Scintilla also provided capacity building and mentorship to the organisation in areas such as research and technology implementation. Critical insights gained from smart cities, competitor and user research conducted by Scintilla, determined that the product must include mains power charging capability, induction charging and Wi-Fi connection for all portable devices. Scintilla developed a product requirements specification to capture all user, functional, technology and commercial business requirements.
Scintilla developed the aesthetic, the mechanical structure and internal component layouts of the PowerMe. Examination of user rituals and scenario based exploration were used to inform the aesthetic of PowerMe whilst the function and features were derived by and confirmed by user testing. Scintilla developed all design documentation and completed preliminary testing and verification of the product.
Scintilla worked closely with SFA manufacturing to ensure suitability with known manufacturing methods and other technology partners. Scintilla developed the first two PowerMe prototypes which were put on display at The Future Street, a public exhibition as part of the national Festival of Landscape Architecture at Circular Quay, Sydney in October 2017. After receiving very positive media coverage and user feedback Scintilla completed all design documentation ready for manufacture.
The research, design and development and verification of PowerMe by Scintilla allowed SFA to confidently begin production and sale of the PowerMe charging table. PowerMe has allowed SFA to lead the Australian industry in this field, provided an additional product range for SFA markets and provided greater amenity to the general public as well as contributing positively to the growth of the smart city movement. PowerMe is now being sold across Australia and the USA.
JULY 2019 UPDATE: PowerMe and the Aria Smart Bench win an Australian International Good Design Award in the category of Furniture and Lighting announced on 11 July 2019.