Waste Not
Nokia Joins O2 Campaign to Ship Cell Phones Without Chargers

Nokia has joined O2’s “Chargers Out of the Box” campaign, which makes the Nokia 301 the first mass-market handset to ship without a charger. The handset will come with just a USB cable, encouraging customers to use existing mains chargers acquired through the purchase of existing mobile phones. Those who want a conventional charger can get one from O2 at a discounted price.

While the Nokia 301 is the fifth phone to be included in the program, the other four have all been high-end smartphones. O2 claims that 82 percent of customers who have bought a charger-less phone have decided the USB cable is all they need.

“We have trialed a series of flagship smartphones on 'Chargers Out of the Box,' ” said Bill Eyres, head of the Think Big program at O2. “Now we want to pilot a less expensive handset — to establish whether customers who tend to purchase these phones are more or less likely to need chargers than those of top-end phones.”

“We need to establish whether this is the case in order to build the case to apply the scheme more widely across our range — working with our manufacturing partners,” he added.

The campaign was launched by O2 in 2012 to cut down the quantity of environmental waste created by unnecessary chargers; there are approximately 100 million in the United Kingdom alone. O2 claims the unused chargers amount to 18,700 tons of components, 124,274 miles of copper wire and plastic covering and the volume of landfill required if they were thrown away would be enough to fill four Olympic swimming pools.

O2 says it aims to supply all of its mobile phones without chargers by 2015 and has already signed up the HTC One X+, HTC One, Nokia Lumia 925 and Sony Xperia SP to the program.

“This is another huge step forward for our scheme. We led the way just twelve months ago,” Eyres concluded. “We hope that others will join the campaign and deliver what the vast majority of consumers want based on all our experience — a saving to the environment that costs them nothing.”

Nokia was ranked No. 9 on Interbrand’s “Best Global Green Brands” list, and was recognized as top riser. The list is determined by the gap that exists between a corporation's environmental practices and consumers' perceptions of those practices.

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