Brightbox Phone Charging Lockers added at Magic Kingdom

by 15 Comments

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Image 4For those of you with dead device woes, the Magic Kingdom has added mobile device charging lockers to its list of free services. There are 6 lockers located in the Space Mountain gift shop and 12 at Cosmic Ray’s. The stations of lockers by manufacturer Brightbox are free to use, but use a credit card as the “key”.

How do you use them? Each unit is equipped with an easy-to-use guidance screen. Swipe a credit or debit card to open a locker. You won’t be charged a fee for the service, but the system uses your card to identify you and open the locker when you retrieve your device. Blue lockers are open, red lockers have devices charging in them, and green lockers have devices that have been charged and are ready to be retrieved. Plug your device into one of three cords in the locker (provided are Apple lightning cable, Apple 30-pin cable, and a MicroUSB cable). You cannot use your own cord to charge your device.

Close the locker, which should now have a red light, and go on about your Magic Kingdom way. Phones take 35 minutes or more to charge, depending on the phone. Allow for about as much time as you would if you plugged your phone into an outlet at home. When the light is green, swipe your card again, open your locker, and retrieve your phone. The process is simple and again, it’s free, so it should be a great deal more convenient than leaving your phone at Guest Relations or sitting at a wall outlet in the park waiting for your battery to charge.

Image 1

This phone has just been plugged in. The red light indicates it has not yet fully charged.

Image 2

The green light indicates the phone is fully charged (it’s already been removed from the locker). The light will turn blue once the locker is closed.

Even though the process is simple, there are a few questions that you should know the answers to before using:

  • You cannot charge multiple devices in one locker. Each is designed to charge and monitor only one device.
  • You can’t charge tablets. The lockers are only about 9.5 inches wide and less than 6 inches deep. It’s possible that even some of the larger model phones may not fit.
  • Though the manufacturer insists that the chambers are safe from data corruption, the best way to be sure your phone’s data won’t be stolen (and that you get a great charge) is to turn your phone off completely before plugging it in.
  • Other devices (external batteries, camera batteries, music players, etc) that use these cords can be charged as long as they fit in the compartment.

Special thanks to @Brand_Glover for the photos used in this article. 

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Posted on April 28, 2014

15 Responses to “Brightbox Phone Charging Lockers added at Magic Kingdom”

  • So it uses a credit card to “identify” you. What happened to an old-fashioned key? The question in my mind is whether any information is captured from the credit card.

    • by Morgan Crutchfield on April 28, 2014, at 1:50 pm EST

      Len,
      It’s unclear (and the manufacturer’s website is not very helpful) as to whether your charging information is captured or not.

      • by Dean Finder on April 29, 2014, at 1:04 am EST

        Those Disney gift cards use the same magstripe as a credit card. Use one that’s been exhausted, and you’re safe.

  • Thanks for the info and the photos. As you mentioned, there is the possibility of data being transferred over these cables, since you can’t see whether they’re just plugged into a regular outlet or into a computer on the other end. Also, I’m always a little leery of swiping a credit card just for identification, since you must trust the operator that the number won’t be stored or stolen from them. In this case, it looks like Disney is not really operating these kiosks, but a third party. I’d feel safer if they were operated by Disney, and if you could use your magicband or RFID ticket for identification instead of a credit card.

    Still, the possibility of phone charging without having to babysit it is tempting.

    • by Morgan Crutchfield on April 28, 2014, at 1:52 pm EST

      Doug, the manufacturer has specific information posted stating that there’s no risk (why wouldn’t they, right?) but the easiest fix to safeguard against data theft is to just turn the phone all the way off. Disney has control over the kiosks but you’re right – it’s a third party that’s ultimately responsible. I carry an external battery (NewTrent iTorch) that can also be recharged in these with no risk of data loss.

  • by Robbie Poole on April 28, 2014, at 1:50 pm EST

    This is a GREAT idea and location! Plug phone in, get in queue for Space Mountain (where my phone doesn’t get reception anyway) get off ride, fully charged phone. Excellent!

  • Too bad they don’t use Magic Bands for identification….

    • I had hoped for the same! Just when I’m excited that I can lock my CC in the safe in my room, a new reason that I may need to carry it with me again. Hopefully that will be an enhancement they offer in the future if they can work out the details with the 3rd party company.

  • by Robbie Poole on April 28, 2014, at 1:51 pm EST

    Oh, forgot to mention, the credit card info? Go buy a $25 prepaid AMEX / Visa and swipe it. I keep one in case of emergencies… and things like this.

    • by Morgan Crutchfield on April 28, 2014, at 1:53 pm EST

      Great idea, Robbie! Thanks for sharing.

      • There’s nothing special or magical about a credit card. The mag stripe has two data “tracks”. Track 1 has your credit card number and expiration date (and possibly the CVV). The second has the same data in a different format for redundancy.

        What really matters here is what they’re doing with it. If it’s not looking for anything special in the data, then theoretically, ANY card with a mag stripe should be able to activate and unlock one of these chargers as long as you use the same card both times.

        Now it’s likely (I would hope) that they are hashing the data on the card and not storing it in clear text while you’re charging. Most people don’t know this, but your credit card is probably the least secure thing you have. Not only is the number clearly printed on it, but the data on the mag stripe is not encrypted. It’s really not safe to assume you can use it with a device like this and that the credit card data cannot be stolen.

        Since they’re not charging the card, there’s no real reason that you shouldn’t be able to use something like a store club card or something. Whether their system allows that is the question.

  • Is it possible for someone from the touringplans team to test these charging stations using a Disney gift card to see if this is a viable option?

  • I tried this on Sunday. It was great! I plugged in my nearly dead phone and locked it and went to Be Our Guest for dinner. I moseyed my way back later and my phone was 85% charged. The biggest problem? Not enough lockers! The one bank near Space Mountain was full and of the 2 banks in Cosmic Ray’s, only two lockers were available.

    They need more of these and in other parks as well!