Answer: it charges your phone
In Boston and Cambridge, Mass., a new public bench with a Seussian moniker provides pedestrians a chance to charge their phones while also collecting environmental data. In addition to featuring USB ports, the bench also collects data about the weather, noise level, air quality and number of people walking past.
“We want to reactivate the city and create a new shared social experience. Computers took people off the streets. […] We envision Soofas acting as magnets that invite people to enjoy the outdoors while reading the news, sharing a video or catching up on email without fear of running out of power,” the company said in a press release.
The benches cost about $3,000 each and, according to the Smithsonian, the company is still looking at monetization options, such as advertising.