The retailer’s smart home collection gained some recognition at the 2016 SXSW Innovation Awards.

By Sarah Yang
Updated March 16, 2016

The home of the future is quickly becoming a reality—and you don’t have to be a billionaire to bring innovation into your own house, with help from companies like IKEA. The Swedish retailer worked with design and innovation consultancy Veryday to unveil their Wireless Charging collection last year, which aimed to bring technology and home design together in a stylish, affordable, and organic way. Most people know the struggles of trying to find a free outlet and dealing with messy cords and cables and this collection makes charging “invisible” with lamps, nightstands, phone cases, and pads that all feature wireless charging. “IKEA and Veryday’s goal was to design a collection of multi-functional products to make charging easy, by turning furniture into charging stations,” Vice President of Design at Veryday, Diana Africano Clark said. “We wanted to make power available anywhere, anytime, removing the stress involved in charging, and saving time and frustration.”

The collection was also a finalist in the SciFi No Longer category at the 2016 SXSW Innovation Awards—celebrating the “coolest scientific achievement or discovery that before 2015 was only possible in science fiction.” To both teams it’s a reflection of their goals: “This is also exactly what IKEA Home Smart and Wireless Charging collection is all about—integrating technology into our everyday lives—naturally,” Clark said. “This is no longer just something that you experience in futuristic visions or Sci-Fi movies, but a reality ready to be experienced.”

And although the collection ultimately didn’t win the award, it’s still a big win for the consumers everywhere. “It’s an example of innovation hat enables a better everyday life for people,” Clark said. “We need to adapt the world of technology to the world of people. We should talk less about technology and more about behaviors and relationships.”