Could this actually be about to happen? Could we finally be seeing a universal charging solution? With the slow progress this has seen so far, we don't want to get ahead of ourselves but a statement by the European Commission has brought welcome news.
“Following a mandate from the European Commission, the European Standardisation Bodies CEN-CENELEC and ETSI have now made available the harmonised standards needed for the manufacture of data-enabled mobile phones compatible with a new common charger,” a statement read. This means that standardisation, based on a micro USB format, could be coming - in the European Union at least - in the near future.
It has been over a year since we first heard of first heard of movement towards a universal charger becoming a possibility. In the EU, 14 phone companies have signed up for a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) and have all now been issued with the details of the micro USB standard. The following 14 companies have signed up: Apple, Emblaze Mobile, Huawei Technologies, LGE, Motorola, NEC, Nokia, Qualcomm, Research in Motion (RIM), Samsung, SonyEricsson, TCT Mobile (ALCATEL mobile phones), Texas Instruments and Atmel.
The inclusion of Apple, Samsung, Sony Ericsson, Nokia and RIM gives the MoU a real sense that a universal charger could actually happen sooner rather than later. The statement added that the first generation of new inter-chargeable mobile phones should reach the EU market from 2010 onwards – which sounds ambitious but we like the optimism. The MoU foresees a future update in order to take into account innovation in technology and its possible uses.
The implementation of a universal charging standard would see up to a 50 percent reduction in power needs as well as a reported elimination of 51,000 tonnes of duplicate chargers clogging up homes around the world.
Source: European Commission