All mobile phones could soon use a single type of charger. The world’s 14 most prominent mobile manufacturers have been sent details by the European Commission of a new standard connection, after they agreed to sign up to it in June 2009.
The technical specifications are based on the micro-USB connector that many mobile manufacturers have already begun to use. Samsung, Apple, Nokia and Research in Motion, the maker of the BlackBerry, are among those that have agreed to adopt it.
The micro-USB jack is already becoming common as manufacturers, including those outside the 14 who have already agreed on it, have made the shift in preparation. Apple’s iPod connector, however, continues to be used for a host of accessories. The Commission anticipates that the first devices whose chargers meet the precise details of the new standard will appear early next year.
European Commission Vice-President Antonio Tajani, Commissioner for Industry and Entrepreneurship, called on manufacturers to show their support for the new standard. “Now it is time for industry to show its commitment to sell mobile phones for the new charger. The common charger will make life easier for consumers, reduce waste and benefit businesses. It is a true win-win situation," he said.
In a statement, the Commission said that “Incompatibility of chargers for mobile phones is not only a major inconvenience for users, but also a considerable environmental problem. Users who want to change their mobile phones must usually acquire a new charger and dispose of the old one, even if it is in good condition.”