IKEA Launches New Apple-Inspired Ad Campaign for Qi Charging Furniture

IKEA today has launched a new "tribute campaign" to Apple and the inductive wireless charging features of the iPhone 8, 8 Plus, and X, playing off of popular Apple catchphrases like "This changes everything" and "Think different" (via DesignTAXI and The Verge).

Images via The Verge

The campaign is called "This Charges Everything," and includes multiple other references to Apple's advertising campaigns of years past, as well as a few jokes aimed at the internet's wish for AirPower to be called "Apple Juice."


The new IKEA ads are aimed at the RIGGAD LED lamp with Qi wireless charging, which runs for $69.99, and the VARV Table lamp with Qi wireless charging, which runs for $79.99. Other Apple references include: "One more thing... it's also a lamp," "Link different," and a question asking Siri "what lamp should I buy?"

IKEA has quite a few pieces of furniture and home accessories with Qi pads, including bedside tables, floor lamps, and individual charging pads (single and triple) that you can place anywhere.


IKEA teamed up with advertising agency ACNE to build the campaign for "This Charges Everything." According to Morten Kjær, Creative Director at IKEA Creative Hub, “IKEA has been very progressive with wireless charging, and we are thrilled that new iPhone owners finally can make use of one of the most powerful lamps we’ve ever made.”


The new campaign has been shared to time with today's launch of the iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus, which are the first of Apple's iPhones to ever support wireless charging through the Qi standard. When it launches in November, the iPhone X will also support the feature and will be able to charge through IKEA's furniture. For a look at current and upcoming Qi-supported charging pads, check out our roundup here.

Related Roundups: iPhone 8, iPhone X
Tags: wireless charging, Qi, Ikea
Buyer's Guide: iPhone (Buy Now)

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Pi Charger Uses Qi Standard to Extend Wireless Charging Reach Beyond Current Mats

With the launch of the iPhone 8 and iPhone X, Apple added inductive wireless charging support to its mobile devices for the first time. While the feature brought Apple's phones up to speed with existing Qi-compatible charging standards, the announcement fell short of some expectations that this year Apple would introduce technology allowing iPhones to be powered wirelessly at a distance, rather than having to use a charging mat.

However, Pi is a California-based startup that aims to break from that limitation with the Pi Charger – a cone-shaped tabletop device that combines Qi-based resonant induction with a special beam-forming algorithm that allows it to charge multiple devices within about a foot in any direction.


The Pi might not reach the distances claimed by Energous' WattUp technology, which uses radio frequencies to charge devices from up to 15 feet away, but it does offer more flexibility than existing pads that devices must be directly placed upon.

In a demo at TechCrunch's Disrupt event, the company showed that a Qi-compatible phone can be placed within a foot of a Pi and it will start charging. Devices can be located anywhere within a 12-inch sphere of influence around the charging hub and in different orientations. The closer the device to the Pi, the faster it charges, with a gradual drop-off in charging speed the further away the phone is.
"Magnetic fields are the best way to send meaningful energy to phones, tablets, and other portable electronics," said Lixin Shi, Pi's CTO and co-founder. "The hard part was figuring out how to make magnetic charging more flexible, multi-device, and extend its useful range. It took us over a year to complete the mathematical proof that makes it all possible."
The team behind Pi said they've yet to settle on an exact price for the charger, but they expect it to ship for under $200 sometime in 2018. As for Apple, there is plenty of anecdotal evidence to suggest it has partnered with Energous to work on bringing a truly wire-free, over-the-air charging technology to its consumer devices, but we'll likely have to wait for at least another year to see the possible fruits of those labors.

Related Roundups: iPhone 8, iPhone X
Tags: wireless charging, Qi, Pi
Buyer's Guide: iPhone (Buy Now)

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Pi Charger Uses Qi Standard to Extend Wireless Charging Reach Beyond Current Mats

With the launch of the iPhone 8 and iPhone X, Apple added inductive wireless charging support to its mobile devices for the first time. While the feature brought Apple's phones up to speed with existing Qi-compatible charging standards, the announcement fell short of some expectations that this year Apple would introduce technology allowing iPhones to be powered wirelessly at a distance, rather than having to use a charging mat.

However, Pi is a California-based startup that aims to break from that limitation with the Pi Charger – a cone-shaped tabletop device that combines Qi-based resonant induction with a special beam-forming algorithm that allows it to charge multiple devices within about a foot in any direction.


The Pi might not reach the distances claimed by Energous' WattUp technology, which uses radio frequencies to charge devices from up to 15 feet away, but it does offer more flexibility than existing pads that devices must be directly placed upon.

In a demo at TechCrunch's Disrupt event, the company showed that a Qi-compatible phone can be placed within a foot of a Pi and it will start charging. Devices can be located anywhere within a 12-inch sphere of influence around the charging hub and in different orientations. The closer the device to the Pi, the faster it charges, with a gradual drop-off in charging speed the further away the phone is.
"Magnetic fields are the best way to send meaningful energy to phones, tablets, and other portable electronics," said Lixin Shi, Pi's CTO and co-founder. "The hard part was figuring out how to make magnetic charging more flexible, multi-device, and extend its useful range. It took us over a year to complete the mathematical proof that makes it all possible."
The team behind Pi said they've yet to settle on an exact price for the charger, but they expect it to ship for under $200 sometime in 2018. As for Apple, there is plenty of anecdotal evidence to suggest it has partnered with Energous to work on bringing a truly wire-free, over-the-air charging technology to its consumer devices, but we'll likely have to wait for at least another year to see the possible fruits of those labors.

Related Roundups: iPhone 8, iPhone X
Tags: wireless charging, Qi, Pi
Buyer's Guide: iPhone (Buy Now)

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Here’s a Look at Discounted and Upcoming Qi Charging Pads for iPhone 8 and iPhone X

Apple on Tuesday announced the iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus, and iPhone X, all of which will launch with inductive wireless charging support on Qi-compatible accessories. Since Apple's first-party "AirPower" mat won't be available to buy until 2018, new iPhone owners will be left to sift through the current market of Qi-compatible wireless charging pads, which is pretty large.

For this reason, we've rounded up a few Qi accessories that are currently discounted and that should work with the iPhone 8 and iPhone X, most hitting below the $30 range. We've also included a few Qi charging pads that are confirmed iPhone 8/X compatible that accessory makers like Belkin and Mophie announced this week alongside Apple's big unveiling of each smartphone. Since virtually any Qi-supported charging pad should work with the new iPhones, buying decisions will come down to personal preferences of design, size, and color.

Qi Chargers Under $60





Choetech's T511 charging pad comes in blue and black, and includes a battery light indicator on the front side of the device to confirm that the inductive wireless charging connection has been made with the smartphone. The small pad measures at 3.6 inches on all sides, and is one of the most popular and inexpensive Qi pads currently on Amazon. The downside is that it doesn't come with a micro-USB cable, which you'll need to connect the pad to a wall outlet or USB port, priced at about $5-$10 on Amazon.


Aukey's wireless charger is slightly smaller than Choetech's with a 3.4-inch diameter across its circular footprint. It has a flashing LED to indicate when the smartphone sitting atop it is charging, and the USB power cable is included.


Anker's fast charging pad delivers 10 watts of power to smartphones, but will likely function like other 7.5W mats when used with the iPhone 8 and iPhone X, since those devices are believed to reach only half (7.5W) of current Qi standards (15W). Anker's solution has non-disruptive LEDs surrounding the pad to indicate the smartphone's charge, a non-slip pad, and measures 3.4 inches on all sides.



Samsung even has a few Qi-compatible charing accessory options that should work with iPhone 8 and iPhone X, including a Fast Wireless Charging Pad (again note such fast charging features will be incompatible with iPhone devices). This one is available in black sapphire and white, includes an LED indicator halo, and is slightly more elevated in comparison to other Qi mats. You can find the same Samsung accessory for nearly 50 percent off from select Walmart resellers, as well.


Incipio has quite a few Qi chargers, two of which it lists as iPhone-compatible options: the Ghost Qi 3-Coil base and Ghost Qi 15W base. Both are priced at $59.99, with the standout differences related to the design and shape of each base. The 3-Coil is a rectangle measuring 5.37 inches by 2.73 inches, while the 15W is a simple 3.5-inch square. Both come in black, have the usual LED indicator lights, and provide audio cues when the charging begins and ends.

Upcoming Qi Chargers





Opening for orders this Friday, September 15, Belkin's BOOST UP Wireless Charging Pad has been specifically designed for the iPhone 8, 8 Plus, and X. Belkin said it worked closely with Apple when designing and optimizing the pad, and it'll provide charge to the iPhone through "most lightweight cases" up to 3mm thick. The 7.5W pad has a battery indicator LED, non-slip surface, and AC adapter included. Belkin's accessory will be sold on Apple.com and in Apple stores as well.


Mophie was directly mentioned during Apple's keynote as an accessory maker coming out with support for the iPhone 8 and X's wireless charging features, with a device called the Mophie Wireless Charging Base. A pre-order date has not yet been confirmed, but we do know Mophie's solution provides the expected 7.5W of power to an iPhone when placed on its small, circular, and rubberized base. It'll also be available from Apple.

If you want to buy a Mophie Qi charging pad right now, the company's Charge Force Wireless Charging Base is a universal Qi solution with noted support for the upcoming iPhones, priced at $39.95 from B&H Photo.



Griffin's upcoming PowerBlock Wireless Qi Charging Pad provides 15W of power to compatible Qi devices when placed on its synthetic wool surface. Griffin notes compatibility with all of the new iPhones, but no release date has been confirmed.


RavPower has revealed a new Qi charging pad, confirming compatibility with Apple devices and coming sometime this fall. RavPower's base is a bit unique in comparison with other companies since it can both sit flat on a surface, or act as a sort of iPhone dock with an angled stand. The accessory maker said the product will be available in either a standalone charging pad or pad + stand bundle.

Public Qi Chargers




There will be multiple options for wirelessly charging your iPhone when you're out and about in public spaces, thanks to the confirmation of Apple support from a few inductive wireless charging companies. One is Aircharge, which confirmed that iPhone 8, 8 Plus, and X owners will be able to use the company's own app to locate nearby public Aircharge locations, which amount to 5,000 around the world. These are in restaurants, cafes, shops, hotels, airports, and train stations.
"We're a long time partner of Apple via its MFi program and we're excited Qi wireless charging is now a standard feature in the new iPhone models. The inclusion of wireless charging from a major mobile phone and tech manufacturer like Apple will accelerate and drive widespread consumer awareness and mainstream adoption", said Steven Liquorish, founder and CEO of Aircharge.
Powermat made a similar announcement this week, confirming that owners of the iPhone 8, 8 Plus, and X will be able to charge their smartphones on Powermats "around the world." Powermat locations support the Qi standard, and the company has a supported app so users can discover where the closest pad is to their location, including places like Starbucks and Samsung stores.

AirPower



Of course, Apple's own first-party solution for your home will arrive sometime next year. Apple's mat, unlike the ones mentioned above, will be able to support as many as three Qi devices, and Apple has shown an iPhone, Apple Watch Series 3, and AirPods all charging at once on AirPower. When one device is placed next to the iPhone X (or 8/8 Plus), they alert the iPhone, which displays a notification message on the lock screen confirming the presence of the Apple Watch/AirPods along with the battery level.

Although unconfirmed by Apple, Macworld has reported that all previous generations of the Apple Watch will work on AirPower, including Series 2 and Series 0 devices.

For more information on prices for current and upcoming Qi inductive wireless chargers -- which includes bedside tables and lamps from IKEA -- check out the MacRumors Deals Roundup.

Note: MacRumors is an affiliate partner with some of the these vendors.

Related Roundups: iPhone 8, iPhone X
Tags: wireless charging, Qi

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Apple Unveils ‘AirPower’ Multi-Device Wireless Charging Accessory Coming Next Year

At its iPhone-centric event that saw the unveiling of the new iPhone X and iPhone 8 equipped with Qi wireless charging capabilities, Apple announced a new wireless charging accessory called "AirPower."

Designed as a simple oval-shaped white charging mat, AirPower is able to charge the iPhone X and the iPhone 8 inductively. It also works with the Apple Watch Series 3 models and a new AirPods charging case that was briefly mentioned during the keynote.


The new AirPods charging case is identical to the current case, with the exception of a new indicator light located on the outside of the body and the wireless charging capabilities.

In addition to being able to charge through Apple's AirPower charging mat, the new iPhone X and the iPhone 8 will also be able to charge using Qi-based charging accessories. Apple will partner with companies like Mophie and Belkin to create iPhone-specific accessories, but all Qi chargers should work as event videos showed the iPhone charging in cafes and other locations.

According to Apple, its AirPower charging mat uses a new kind of charging standard that is able to support multiple devices at once, so it won't be immediately available.

Apple plans to ship the AirPower in 2018, but a more specific launch date hasn't been announced. Pricing is alwo unknown at this time.


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Images Claim to Show Wireless Charging Components Destined for the ‘iPhone 8’

Images claiming to offer a glimpse of the wireless charging circuitry included in Apple's upcoming "iPhone 8" have been shared on Chinese microblogging platform Weibo today by technology website ZEALER (via iClarified).


The two photos show several assembled inductive charging kits in a plastic tray and a black PCB board of bare circuitry modeled on the assembled kits. As with most alleged leaks that appear on Weibo, it's extremely difficult to tell whether the images are authentic, but we're covering them here for completion.


KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has claimed the iPhone 8 and its companion devices, the "iPhone 7s" and the "iPhone 7s Plus" will all adopt glass bodies with metal frames to facilitate WPC-standard wireless charging functionality. The WPC-standard refers to the Wireless Power Consortium, which supports the Qi wireless charging functionality built into many Android devices.

According to Kuo, wireless charging will be enabled through an optional accessory sold alongside the new iPhones, rather than be included in the box. Separately, Apple blogger John Gruber has suggested that the accessory might not be available in September when the iPhones are expected to launch, but might ship later in the year instead alongside an iOS 11.1 software update.


Fast Company also reported that software issues, not components, would be the reason behind a possible delay in enabling wireless charging in the phones. According to their sources, if the software isn't ready, wireless charging could be unavailable when the phone first begins shipping.

Early rumors about the OLED "iPhone 8" and the iterative "S" cycle upgrades to the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus suggested Apple was considering a long-range charging feature, but that technology is yet to mature and there are likely challenges to overcome before it's ready for inclusion in a device like the iPhone. As such, Qi wireless charging is in line with rumors that have predicted the iPhone 8 will support inductive charging rather than a true wireless charging feature.

Related Roundup: iPhone 8
Tag: wireless charging

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Apple Has at Least Five Different Groups Working on Wireless Charging Ahead of iPhone 8

Apple is widely expected to launch its first iPhone with wireless charging capabilities later this year, but rumors remain conflicting about whether the feature will be based on inductive technology, which would require a charging pad or puck, or a truly wireless long-range charging solution.


Apple recently joined the Wireless Power Consortium, a group of over 200 companies backing the Qi wireless charging standard, perhaps signaling that it is leaning towards an inductive solution. After all, the Apple Watch uses Qi, albeit a tweaked version that only works with Apple's own charger.

Qi, pronounced "chee," is capable of scaling from less than 1 watt to more than 2,000 watts of power, making the standard more than adequate enough for charging any smartphone. Its backing members include Samsung, LG, HTC, Qualcomm, Dell, Canon, Sony, Huawei, Apple supplier Luxshare, and others.

Apple is known to test many different technologies behind closed doors, some of which never see the light of day. Reuters today, citing "a person with knowledge of the matter," said there are still "at least five different groups" working on wireless charging technology within the company ahead of new iPhones.

Just three months ago, Apple was said to have more than 10 different iPhone prototypes under development, so it could be experimenting with different charging solutions for future devices; however, with iPhone 8 production expected to begin relatively soon, Apple has likely already finalized the hardware.

Apple will reportedly begin production of its upcoming iPhones as early as next quarter, so the first part leaks will likely begin to surface over the next few months, which should give us a better idea of what to expect.

Apple is rumored to launch a 5.8-inch iPhone with an edge-to-edge OLED display, alongside updated 4.7-inch and 5.5-inch models, in September. KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo said all three iPhones will feature wireless charging, while some reports have said only the OLED model will be capable.


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Disney Research Builds Prototype Living Room With ‘Safe and Ubiquitous Wireless Power’

Disney Research has constructed a prototype living room with "ubiquitous wireless power delivery," allowing users to move around while their technology charges without any cables, wires, or charging pads (via Ars Technica). Disney's technology mirrors some early rumors for the 2017 iPhone 8, which suggested Apple was building a long-range wireless charging solution instead of the Apple Watch-style inductive charging solution of more recent reports.

The room's walls, ceiling, and floor were built with aluminum panels, and a large copper pipe was placed in its center. The middle of the pipe was cut out and in the gap the researchers placed fifteen capacitors, "and it's those capacitors that set the electromagnetic frequency of the structure, and can find the electric fields."


To generate the power that is relayed into the room, a signal generator sits just outside the prototype living room and outputs a 1.32MHz signal to the capacitors in the pole, producing what the researchers call "quasistatic cavity resonance."
"In this work we're demonstrating room-scale wireless power, but there's no reason we couldn't shrink this down to the size of a toy box or a charging chest, or scale up to a warehouse or a large building."
Given that it's still a very early prototype, there's a few caveats to Disney's wireless charger, including the limit on the power that can be pumped into the room before it reaches dangerous levels for humans. The specific absorption rate, a measure of how much energy can be absorbed by the human body, is capped at 1900 watts. The copper pole at the room's center requires the nearest person to have at least 46 centimeters of clearance before they're put in danger. Besides these restrictions, Disney says it's "completely safe" for anyone to occupy the room for any period of time.

In order for the devices to receive the charging signal, Disney had to design a receiver that allowed the researchers to "power many devices simultaneously." Including an iPhone, the other objects included an RC car, a fan, a lamp, and six other devices. Although the technology is still nascent and the receiver is bulky, Disney's "Volumetric Wireless Power for Livable Spaces" is an interesting look at what future wireless charging systems might be able to accomplish without the restrictions of the inductive charging pads popular today.


Because of the restrictions of charging mats, Apple's Phil Schiller has said in the past that the introduction of a wireless charging pad for iPhone would actually be "more complicated" and he remained unconvinced that it was actually a convenient solution to traditional outlet and USB cable charging. Still, a prominent rumor for the iPhone 8 is its inclusion of wireless charging in some form, with Apple recently joining the Wireless Power Consortium in order to assist in the open development of the Qi wireless charging standard.

Read more about Disney's findings here, and check out another video that dives deep into the science behind the researcher's wireless charging living room.


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Apple Listed as Member of Wireless Power Consortium Behind ‘Qi’ Standard Ahead of iPhone 8

Apple recently became listed as a member of the Wireless Power Consortium, committed to the open development of the Qi wireless charging standard. The listing was brought to our attention by IHS Technology.


If the listing is accurate, Apple has become one of over 200 companies that belong to the consortium, including Samsung, LG, HTC, Qualcomm, Verizon, ConvenientPower, Aircharge, Dell, Canon, Sony, ST Microelectronics, Toshiba, Texas Instruments, Philips, Panasonic, Bosch, Nokia, and Huawei.

Qi is the leading wireless charging standard, used by more than 200 companies in products ranging from smartphones to cordless kitchen appliances. Samsung's latest Galaxy smartphones, for example, feature Qi-based wireless charging which requires placing the device on one of its "Fast Charge" stands.

Qi, pronounced "chee," is capable of scaling from less than 1 watt to more than 2,000 watts of power, making the standard more than adequate enough for charging any smartphone. With Qi's latest Quick Charge technology, a five-minute charge can provide a smartphone with up to five hours of battery life.

The so-called "iPhone 8" is widely rumored to include wireless charging, so Apple's participation in the consortium is perhaps unsurprising. Moreover, there is increasing evidence to suggest the "iPhone 8" may use inductive technology, which would require a charging puck or pad, rather than long-range charging.

Luxshare is also a member of the Wireless Power Consortium, which is notable given a recent rumor claiming the "iPhone 8" will have a separate wireless charger based on technology from the Chinese company. Luxshare was rumored to be a supplier of wireless charging coils for the Apple Watch charger.

In 2015, the inductive Apple Watch charger was found to be compliant with the Qi wireless charging standard. However, Apple's involvement in the Wireless Power Consortium does not guarantee that it will use the Qi standard for future iPhones—but it does suggest it has a growing interest in wireless charging technology.

Over the course of the last year, there has been ongoing speculation that wireless charging company Energous has inked a deal with Apple to potentially provide wireless charging technology for the iPhone 8, but patents and other evidence suggest Apple may pursue its own in-house inductive charging solutions instead.


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iPhone 8 Said to Have Separate Wireless Charger, No Headphone Jack Adapter or USB-C Cable in Box

Apple is planning to release three new iPhone models later this year, including 4.7-inch, 5.5-inch, and an all-new 5-inch model with an OLED display and glass casing, according to Japanese blog Mac Otakara.

iPhone 8 concept by visual designer Moe Slah

The report, citing "reliable sources" within Apple's supply chain, insists that only the OLED model will adopt glass casing and wireless charging capabilities, contradicting a Nikkei report and KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo's repeated claims that all 2017 iPhones will feature an all-glass design and wireless charging.

The blog previously said the more iterative "iPhone 7s" and "iPhone 7s Plus" models will lack wireless charging and retain the now-familiar aluminum design that Apple has used since the iPhone 6 lineup in 2014. Apple supplier Catcher Technology also said it expects only one new iPhone model to have glass casing.

The loosely-translated report suggests the wireless charging will not be a built-in feature, but rather a separate accessory based on technology from Luxshare, a Chinese company that has been rumored to be a supplier of wireless charging coils for the inductive Apple Watch charger in the past.

Samsung's wireless charging stand for the latest Galaxy smartphones

If the report is accurate, it would mean Apple's next iPhones will not have truly wireless long-range charging capabilities, but rather contact-based inductive charging like the Apple Watch or Qi-based charging pads like Samsung's "Fast Charge" stand. Qi's latest Quick Charge 2.0 spec supports wireless charging up to 15W.

Over the course of the last year, there has been ongoing speculation that wireless charging company Energous has inked a deal with Apple to potentially provide wireless charging technology for the iPhone 8, but patents and other evidence suggest Apple may pursue its own in-house inductive charging solutions instead.

Overall, rumors surrounding Apple's wireless charging plans are still lacking consensus. Reports have linked MediaTek, Foxconn, Pegatron, and Lite-On Semiconductor as possible suppliers of wireless charging chips or modules.

Five years ago, Apple marketing chief Phil Schiller said "it's not clear how much convenience" wireless charging systems that have to be plugged in to a wall outlet add, while noting the ubiquity of the USB cord.
As for wireless charging, Schiller notes that the wireless charging systems still have to be plugged into the wall, so it’s not clear how much convenience they add. The widely-adopted USB cord, meanwhile, can charge in wall outlets, computers and even on airplanes, he said.
The report also claims Apple will no longer include a Lightning to 3.5mm Headphone Jack Adapter in the box alongside its next iPhones. Meanwhile, Apple's Lightning to USB-C Cable is said to remain an optional purchase, dashing hopes of connecting the "iPhone 8" to a newer MacBook or MacBook Pro straight out of the box.


Given that Apple's wireless AirPods and BeatsX earphones are now available, perhaps it feels including the Lightning to 3.5mm Headphone Jack Adapter in the box is no longer necessary. But the inclusion of a Lightning to USB-A Cable, rather than a Lightning to USB-C Cable, makes less sense given Apple's port future.

Mac Otakara has a mixed track record at reporting on Apple's upcoming product plans. While it had several accurate reports about the iPhone 7, including its lack of a headphone jack, Jet Black color, and longer earpiece cutout, its rumors about a "Jet White" color and iPhone 6 battery program have yet to materialize.


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