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Mobile phones sold in Australia from the second half of 2010 will include a universal charger several manufacturers have confirmed to SmartHouse. This will replace the current practise of each vendor designing a different charger each time they bring out a new phone.

The new charger that was approved last week by the International Telecommunication Union, (ITU), a United Nations body, is

expected to cut annual greenhouse gas emissions by 13.6m tonnes. Among the manufacturers set to introduce the phone charger in Australia  are Samsung, LG, Sony Ericsson and Nokia.

Industry body the GSMA says that 51,000 tonnes of redundant chargers are generated each year. Currently most chargers are product or brand specific, so people tend to change them when they upgrade to a new phone.

However, the new energy-efficient chargers can be kept for much longer.


“This is a significant step in reducing the environmental impact of mobile charging,” said Malcolm Johnson, director of ITU’s Telecommunication Standardisation Bureau.

“Universal chargers are a common-sense solution that I look forward to seeing in other areas.”

The charger has a micro-USB port at the connecting end, using similar technology to digital cameras.

It is not compulsory for manufacturers to adopt the new chargers but the ITU says that some have already signed up to it.

“We are planning to launch the universal charger internationally during the first half of 2010,” Aldo Liguori, spokesperson for Sony Ericsson told the BBC.

“We will roll it out with new products as they launch.”

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