Monday, February 16, 2009

Mobile World Congress: Industry Supports Universal Charging Solution for Mobile Phones

A mobile industry initiative led by the GSMA and 17 leading mobile operators and manufacturers voiced a commitment to a cross-industry standard for a universal charger for new mobile phones. The aim is to ensure that the mobile industry adopts a common format for mobile phone charger connections and energy-efficient chargers. This could result in an estimated 50 percent reduction in standby energy consumption, the potential elimination of up to 51,000 tons of duplicate chargers and the enhancement of the customer experience by simplifying the charging of mobile phones.

A target date of 2012 has been set for introducing a universal charging solution (UCS) worldwide. The companies have agreed to use Micro-USB as the common universal charging interface. The group agreed that by the 1st January 2012, the majority of all new mobile phone models available will support a universal charging connector and the majority of chargers shipped will meet the high efficiency targets set out by the OMTP (Open Mobile Terminal Platform), the industry body who developed the technical requirements behind UCS.

UCS chargers will also include a 4-star or higher efficiency rating, which is up to three times more energy-efficient than an unrated charger. Furthermore, with potentially 50 per cent less chargers being manufactured each year, the industry can expect to reduce greenhouse gases in manufacturing and transporting replacement chargers by 13.6 to 21.8 million tons a year.

The initial group of companies who have joined the GSMA's UCS initiative include 3 Group, AT&T, KTF, LG, mobilkom austria, Motorola, Nokia, Orange, Qualcomm, Samsung, Sony Ericsson, Telecom Italia, Telef├│nica, Telenor, Telstra, T-Mobile and Vodafone.

"The mobile industry has a pivotal role to play in tackling environmental issues and this programme is an important step that could lead to huge savings in resources, not to mention convenience for consumers," said Rob Conway, CEO and Member of the Board of the GSMA. "There is enormous potential in mobile to help people live and work in an eco-friendly way and with the backing of some or the biggest names in the industry, this initiative will lead the way."

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