The European Commission has released technical specifications for a universal mobile phone charger, approved by 14 of the world’s biggest phone manufacturers such as, Nokia, Sony Ericsson, Research in Motion, Samsung and Apple. Production of the new micro-USB chargers is expected to being immediately, meaning that mobile phone users will be able to buy universal chargers that are compatible with almost all new handsets in the next few months. This brings to an end a process which began in June 2009 when the EU reached a landmark agreement with mobile phone makers to come up with a suitable universal charger.
The development of the technical standards necessary for a common mobile phone charger is fantastic news for consumers who are frustrated by having to use different chargers for each and every phone bought. As soon as the chargers go on sale, it is expected to make life easier for mobile phone owners, reduce electronic waste and be beneficial to businesses. Furthermore, the new Micro-USB mobile phone charger will consume 50% less standby energy than existing models,according to the Global System for Mobile Communications Association (GSMA) which estimates that 51,000 tons of duplicate chargers are manufactured every year.
Are universal mobile phone chargers long overdue?