15-Oct-2015 (Thu)
Wherein you will find us to be very empowering.

People lose their minds when their phones run out of juice, and then they ask bartenders to let them plug their phone in behind the bar, and don't understand why we always say no. "But you don't have to do it for everybody, just for meeee!"

It's common at festivals these days for there to be lockers that have chargers inside of them, and I spent about a minute pondering how hard it would be to build one of those when I realized that was just making a whole new set of problems like left-behind phones and lost keys.

So instead, we're now selling DNA-branded cell phone chargers at coat check! Twelve bucks.

I don't know how high-quality the batteries or the cables are, since (like most microchips) they are constructed primarily from sadness and the bone marrow of Chinese prisoners, but I can definitely guarantee you that it's the cheapest phone charger between you and your car.

You know there's also a 40-outlet power strip under the customer side of the Pizza bar, right? I'm not sure most people have noticed that that's there.

43 Responses:

  1. Jason says:

    "But you don't have to do it for everybody, just for meeee!"

    That ought to earn them an inked stamp on the forehead that means "Charge me double", no?

  2. Ryan Russell says:

    Pretty good price. Do you sell them pre-charged?

    • Adam says:

      It says "pre-charged" RIGHT THERE IN THE PHOTO.

      • Ryan Russell says:

        So it does. Curious about the charging arrangement in place.

        • Aaron says:

          If they're like almost every other example of the species, they come charged out of the shipping carton, because it has occurred to the manufacturers that to do otherwise is likely to recapitulate the chicken-or-egg problem with bonus inventive swearing.

          • jwz says:

            They don't come charged (see: "sorrow and Chinese prisoners") but we follow the sophisticated protocol of plugging them in before selling them.

  3. the hatter says:

    Just a suggestion, but as an incentive, you could offer to swap out anyone's discharged ones for a freshly-charged one (from a set of loaner ones obvs, not giving away new ones all the time/not giving new customers already-abused ones) for disorganised regulars. A UK cell network (who gives customers a charger bar) offers this and I can see how it'd make it much more of an attractive proposition, even though it probably won't get used a whole lot.

    Or you could glue some usb cables into some sockets in the pizza bar, but I suspect that'd also become a whole new set of problems.

    • Our core competency is booze and music.
      These are primarily a means of allowing our staff to focus on those areas, rather than spending 5 minutes telling someone that we cannot babysit and charge their phone for them. This is not an attemp at entering the glamorous and exciting area of batter life management.

  4. halcy says:

    The DNA pizza link gets shouty at me about the certificate cname.

    • ACN says:

      Samesies.

      Safari on iOS 9.

      • Leonardo Herrera says:

        In Chrome I get NET::ERR_CERT_COMMON_NAME_INVALID. Also, it doesn't like the cipher suite much.

        • Looks like you're serving up the dnalounge.com cert on the dnapizza.com site:

          depth=1 /C=US/O=GeoTrust Inc./CN=RapidSSL SHA256 CA - G3
          verify error:num=20:unable to get local issuer certificate
          verify return:0
          ---
          Certificate chain
          0 s:/OU=GT80428142/OU=See http://www.rapidssl.com/resources/cps (c)14/OU=Domain Control Validated - RapidSSL(R)/CN=www.dnalounge.com
          i:/C=US/O=GeoTrust Inc./CN=RapidSSL SHA256 CA - G3
          1 s:/C=US/O=GeoTrust Inc./CN=RapidSSL SHA256 CA - G3
          i:/C=US/O=GeoTrust Inc./CN=GeoTrust Global CA

  5. This is, for the record, complete genius. If more venues did this, I'd probably have a drawer full of the damn things. They'd be the matchbooks of the 21st century!

    BTW: things may have improved since the last time I looked, but when I did the state of Chinese knock-off Lightning® cables was dire -- the last time I ordered a batch, three out of the five wouldn't even charge, nevermind sync. (Thanks ever so much Apple for deciding that active DRM in my fucking charging cable was a feature add.)

    The cheapest and shortest apple-certified USB to Lightning cable I could find was the Amazon Basics 4" at $7 each. Might be worth stocking a fistful behind the bar to resell at $12/pop for anyone complaining that the builtin cable is fucked.

  6. kwk says:

    That's bizarre to me. "Whatever shall I do here with no smartphone? If only there were beverages and entertainment available." Damn kids, lawn, &c.

    • Elusis says:

      To be fair, having the phone work can be a crucial step in the getting-home process.

      What am I saying, all their music sounds like noise anyhow.

  7. Tim says:

    Does this charger come with an iPhone cable, or do you depend on customers to arrive with one? I wasn't aware that you could get a functional Lightning cable so cheaply.

    • Adam says:

      The included cable is visible RIGHT THERE IN THE PHOTO.

      • Tim says:

        You're right, of course. With the photo angle and the tip reflection, I thought it was a USB micro, but I now see that it's a Lightning adaptor. Curious as to how well these work in practice.

        • nooj says:

          Well enough for a no-nonsense, tech-savvy guy to be comfortable putting his personal brand name on it and advertising it to the world! Jesus, people, what the fuck?

          • Elusis says:

            HAVE YOU CONSIDERED THAT MAYBE YOU SHOULD TELL PEOPLE NOT TO USE THESE TO STIR THEIR DRINKS WITH? HMMM? HMMM? HERE TO HELP!

            • yelp reviewer says:

              I stirred my drink with this and now neither my drink or phone works. Would not reccommend.

  8. mahboud says:

    Let's see, I've got to add something to this conversation about this simple benefit being provided…

    Hmmm…

    What do I do while the phone is getting enough charge to turn back on? Do I have to talk to people there?

    And how do we know that this isn't some sort of device that will hack into my phone over the lightning connection and steal my personal data and transmits it back to the prisoners in China?

    • cwillu says:

      Have you considered the possibility that you are not the target audience?

  9. Tod Kurt says:

    Any plans to put these in the online store? I would happily buy two.

  10. Timmay says:

    I would also buy one or two if they were in the online store.

  11. Jim Sweeney says:

    This entire thread made my day.

  12. Thanks for the lightning cable recommendation, too. I'm always thrashing my good ones, and my cheap ones don't work.

  13. Michael Dwyer says:

    I have to ask... was this your idea? Is someone else already doing this somewhere? Because this is an awesome idea. You know what appeals to me the most about it? It doesn't feel like gouging. You can't get a cable for less that $20 at an airport. You're going to drop $14 at Best Buy and you've still got to buy something else to power it.

    But you're giving out a cable AND a battery that I can take home and reuse for less than half that? And all I need to do in return is show off your cool logo?

    Do you really honestly not see why people are throwing money at you? Why we think this is great of you and want these in your online store?

    However, speaking as someone who was just looking at the damage caused by a failed battery on charge, it might be a good idea to find a way to safely isolate them while you're charging them. A large number of cheap packs seems like it is playing with the odds a bit. I don't want DNA Lounge destroyed by a flaky LiIon cell bursting into flames in the middle of the night.

  14. The gift shop grows...

  15. Geoff Smith says:

    I really want a stencil stylized image of Tony Robbins on the price cards.

  16. The comments are awesome!