February 17, 2009

Mobile Industry Agrees To Universal Charger

Seventeen mobile phone industry-leading companies on Tuesday agreed to create a universal charger in order to reduce waste and save money.

Additionally, the new universal charger will use 50 percent less stand-by energy than current ones, according to the industry group GSM Association (GSMA).

Most cell phone makers currently produce different sizes and shapes of chargers for their devices.

"This is a broad agreement that will move the industry to a single, energy-efficient charger for all mobile phones," said Michael O'Hara, marketing director for the GSMA.

Among those companies that have agreed to the plan are Nokia, Motorola, Samsung, Sony Ericsson, LG, T-Mobile, Orange, 3, AT&T and Vodafone.

"The target is that the majority of mobile phones shipped by 2012 will support this new interface," said O'Hara.

Manufacturers will likely lose revenues they make from replacements of broken or lost chargers. The micro-USB connector will be used as the common charging interface.

"By supporting this industry initiative on common charging solutions, and enabling consumers to choose if they need a charger with every new device or can re-use existing ones, we can contribute further in improving the industry's environmental footprint," said Mitti Storckovius, director of environment, devices at Nokia.

The European Commission has been applying pressure to the industry to develop a universal charger.

EU Industry Commissioner Guenter Verheugen told German radio station Deutsche Welle last week that there were over 30 different kinds of chargers in use across the 27-nation European Union.


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