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Industry leaders unite for universal mobile charger

Micro-USB charging device will be supported by most new cellphones by 2012

Leading mobile operators and manufacturers, led by the GSMA, have announced a universal charger for mobile phones.

Announced at the GSMA World Mobile Congress keynote in Barcelona, the universal charging solution (UCS) initiative is another green stride by the mobile industry.

"The mobile industry has a pivotal role to play in tackling environmental issues and this programme is an important step that could lead to huge savings in resources, not to mention convenience for consumers," said Rob Conway, CEO and GSMA board member.

"There is enormous potential in mobile to help people live and work in an eco-friendly way and with the backing of some of the biggest names in the industry, this initiative will lead the way," added Conway.

Companies that have joined GSMA's UCS initiative so far include AT&T, LG, Motorola, Nokia, Orange, Samsung, Sony Ericsson, Vodafone and several others industry players.

The group aims to have the universal charger, which will have a micro-USB charging interface, widely available by 2012. A majority of new mobile phones are expected to support the connector by that time.

It’s estimated to reduce standby energy consumption by 50% and will meet strict standards set by the Open Mobile Terminal Platform (OMTP) industry body.

The universal charger will also benefit consumers as they can use the same charging device for future handsets and no longer have to worry about finding a compatible mobile charger while on the go.