Iconic red phone boxes used to be ubiquitous in the UK; the most popular one, the K6, was designed by Sir Giles Gilbert Scott in 1935. By 1960 when it was replaced by the more modern K7 design, more than 60,000 were built; more than 11,000 survive.
Now an New York co-working company, Bar Works, is launching Pod Works, in London, Leeds and Edinburgh. They are converting the three foot square phone boxes into mini-offices, complete with WiFi, a printer/scanner, 25 inch monitor. To keep you going there is also a hot drinks machine. It will work on a subscription basis, £19.99 a month.
Bar Works CEO Jonathan Black says in a press release:
Entrepreneurs and others constantly on the move need a convenient, affordable and private place to work. Why should they sit in Starbucks or any other coffee bar when using one of our Pods will allow them to truly focus on their job before an important meeting or presentation at less than the price of two cups of coffee a week.
Yes, why? Well for one thing, in a real coffee bar you can get two cups of decent coffee, a bit more room, access to a loo and you are not compressed into a three foot square phone booth in view of everyone walking by. Then there is the issue of comfort; these can be very cold in winter and hot in summer.
So are they all going to be installed in lobbies inside buildings? Then they are just being cute. It would make more sense to use those lovely indoor phone booths like the Beatles did in A Hard Day's Night.
But is an interesting idea, and they are iconic and cute. I would prefer it if it was like a Tardis and somehow had a bit more room on the interior as it does on the exterior. It would be nice if it could travel through time as well, so I could get my presentations done at the last minute.