New ATandT Zero Charger Is Smart, Efficient and Money Saving

 
 
By Michelle Maisto  |  Posted 2010-03-17 Email Print this article Print
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

The AT&T Zero Charger knows when to say when: sensing if it's not connected to a phone, it can cut off the power supply from an electrical outlet. It will also work with phones from different manufacturers, ideally including Apple, Nokia and Samsung, eliminating the need for each new phone to ship with a charger.

This May, "top green carrier" AT&T will begin selling the Zero Charger, an energy- and resource-saving charger for a variety of mobile phones.
 
The charger not only charges devices with better power efficiency, but it can sense when it's plugged into a wall but not also a phone, and consequently cut the power supply from the socket, saving wasted electricity.
 
AT&T estimates-based on approximately 80 percent of users leave chargers in the wall, the average charger wasting 170mW when idle and that most users charge their devices three to four times a week for eight hours-that this electricity-cutting move could save enough to power 24,000 homes for a year.
 
"AT&T worked hand-in-hand with Superior Communications to create the first practical user-friendly, zero-draw charger for mobile phones," said Carlton Hill, AT&T vice president of devices and product development, in a statement. "With the size of AT&T's customer base, providing solutions like these helps our customers make a big difference."
 
(Nokia has previously estimated that if the 1 billion people using its phones would just unplug the darn chargers from the wall, enough energy to power 100,000 homes could be saved.)
 
The Zero Charger will come in smaller packaging than traditional chargers, as well as packaging that's 100 percent recycled paper. It has a 5-star efficiency rating and, given its "block and cable" design, as AT&T describes it, the charger can adapt to a number of different handsets, eliminating the need for new phones to ship with chargers and enabling consumers to continue using a single charger over the years.
 
In June 2009, Apple, LG, Motorola, NEC, Nokia, Qualcomm, Research In Motion, Samsung, Sony Ericsson and Texas Instruments signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), drafted by the European Commission, agreeing to standardize their devices' chargers. Eliminating the need for each device to ship with a new charger not only saves resources, but keeps money in the pockets of consumers as well as device makers, which have smaller packages to pack and ship.
 
Gartner Analyst Carolina Milanesi called the MoU a "win-win for everyone."
 
On March 5, AT&T additionally announced it would be requiring slimmer and more minimal packaging from its mobile handset partners. By reducing packing for device chargers, phone cases, batteries and data cables, AT&T hopes to keep 200 tons of plastic and paper waste out of landfills.
 
Solomon Chen, EO of Superior Communications said of the Zero Charger, in a statement, "Innovations like this help everyone take those small steps which will, in the end, lead to a better environment for all."
 
Pricing for the Zero Charger will be approximately the same as current replacement chargers, which currently vary by model.   


 
 
 
 
Michelle Maisto has been covering the enterprise mobility space for a decade, beginning with Knowledge Management, Field Force Automation and eCRM, and most recently as the editor-in-chief of Mobile Enterprise magazine. She earned an MFA in nonfiction writing from Columbia University, and in her spare time obsesses about food. Her first book, The Gastronomy of Marriage, if forthcoming from Random House in September 2009.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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