Power Outlet that Charges for Charging

We posted a comic about people charging their mobile devices at an airport, and it made me wonder how long it would be before the airport started charging money for this service. Technology is working toward that glorious day.
Sony is building a new kind of power outlet that raises a not entirely pleasant prospect—in the future, plugging a phone into a public wall socket might require authentication and take a chunk out of your bank account. But the technology will have many important uses, Sony says, from managing payments for recharging electrical vehicles to avoiding blackouts by intelligently regulating the use of power.

Announced by Sony last month, and demonstrated today in a video posted by Tokyo news site DigInfo TV, Sony's authentication outlet manages electricity use on a per-user and per-device basis with NFC (near field communication) and RFID (radio-frequency identification) tools.

The technology may be years away from commercial release, but a prototype demonstration shows a handheld dryer being plugged into an outlet that has the ability to authenticate devices. The dryer doesn't need to be modified because it attaches to the outlet through a plug containing an NFC chip.

I don't know about years away, when there's money to be made, the introduction of new technology seems to travel in light speeds. It may appear sooner than you think! Link -via Geekosystem

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This is despicable. Aren't we already paying for charging our devices through the ticket price (airport taxes) and by buying severely over-priced food and other stuff at the airport's shops?
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A former roommate of mine went to England for a work-study program back in the 1970s. She told me she had to feed quarters into a device in her room to get electricity at all. This is kind of a modern version of the same thing.
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