As the title suggests, I’m doing a series on cool technology I’d like to see in Qatar. I plan to do one post a week for the next couple of months. Qatar has definitely come a long way technologically, but it still lacks that cutting-edge wow factor when it comes to trying new technologies. Let me know of any cool technology you’d like to see in Qatar and perhaps I’ll do a little write-up on it.
Qatar has plenty of sun, even if it is often masked a bit by dust and growing haze. With all this wonderful natural light, why don’t see more uses of solar energy here? Perhaps it is because Qatar produces tons of non-renewable energy sources, but still, it seems silly not to take advantage of one of the Gulf’s most abundant resources.
One cool technology I’d love to see here that does harness the power of solar in a clever way is the Strawberry Tree. Developed by Strawberry Energy in Serbia, the Strawberry Tree is a simple structure that uses solar cells to charge mobile phones. The structure looks a bit like a tree and can be placed in almost any public place. Users simply come up to the tree, plug in their phone and let it charge. It’s a great way to harness solar power to keep our phones charged and it also promotes social interaction. It’s not hard to imagine a Strawberry Tree in one of Qatar’s many parks, and a crowd of connected citizens plugging in and hopefully starting a conversation about renewable energy.
Qatar already has numerous parks connected with free Wi-fi, so to me this seems like a logical addition. No longer would we have to worry about our phones dying when we were out enjoying a park or other public area. I’m not sure how much these cost, but my guess is that wouldn’t be a major barrier and that usage here would be huge. I say bring on the Strawberry Trees!
Note: I discovered Strawberry Tree in this article on Mashable that included a few other innovative uses of solar power. Well worth reading.