A boring charger might not have the glamorous appeal of a fancy iPad case or bag, but it could make a huge difference to your life. If your life is sad, small and you’re excited about saving a few seconds every day. Kidding. LaunchPort’s inductive iPad charger actually looks pretty awesome.
The LaunchPort is more of a system than a single product, with all the inflated pricing you’d expect. You’ll need the case (a 0.7-pound monster, half as heavy as the iPad 3 itself) for $149, which has a magnetic ring on the back plus a USB port on the bottom for regular charging, along with either the WallStation or BaseStation, both of which cost $199 each. That puts you $348 in the hole just so you don’t have to plug a cable into the iPad’s cable hole.
Still, there’s no doubting the appeal of being able to slap your iPad onto the wall or down on a bulky, console-like dock and have it just start charging. Sure, it would be nice if the iPad had this tech built in for zero size and weight penalty, and if the charging station was in fact my knees, but everyone knows knees aren’t magnetic (or electric), so that’s out.
Should you want to drop the price of half a 4G iPad on a cable replacement, you’ll have to wait until some time in September to do so. In the meantime you can watch as Apple changes its dock-connector and obsoletes an entire industry’s worth of gear overnight.