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Cellphones Power

Universal Phone Charger Approved By UN Body 220

andylim writes "Plans for a universal mobile phone charger have been approved by the International Telecommunication Union (ITU), a United Nations body. The charger has a micro-USB port at the connecting end, using technology similar to what is commonly used with 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."
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Universal Phone Charger Approved By UN Body

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  • by Idimmu Xul ( 204345 ) on Saturday October 24, 2009 @08:22AM (#29855717) Homepage Journal

    Although it is funny to watch all the iPhone users I work with scrabble about sharing one cable at work between them whilst we drown in a sea of standard USB cabling!

    • by fermion ( 181285 )
      What many forget is that the dock connector was not originally a USB solution, it was a firewire connector. This was because USB was so slow. My first player was a USB device and I hardly ever changed the music because it took forever to load.

      Of course Apple has left the firewire world, so there is no reason to keep the fancy connector except for backward compatibility and to earn licensing fees. I assume that the later will motivate them to maintain the standard, at least for while longer. I do suspe

  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday October 24, 2009 @08:24AM (#29855739)

    This folks is one of the two UN organisations (both older than the UN) who could run the WWW better than ICANN. The other being the Postal Union (UPU or IPU I think they changed their name).

    So, there you go, the UN is not just the political shit. The ITU is what means that you can phone from point A to point B, they are the logical choice for control over the WWW and domain name system.

    • by ivan_w ( 1115485 )

      Cough cough !!!

      Since when does ICANN run the WWW ? (and what the heck is "The WWW" ? - No The internet is not *only* about HTML transiting over HTTP thank you..)

      But this put aside, I don't think it is the role of the ITU to govern over anything like HTTP, HTML, the Domain Name System (which is only governed by ICANN up to the point where you pick their root servers as a hint).

      ITU is about telecommunication. It describes how information gets from point A to point B - and NOT the actual payload.. For example,

      • by raddan ( 519638 ) *
        Some people apparently can't believe that a decentralized, peer network can run itself.

        We have got to get this thing under control, people!
    • obviously you haven't worked with the itu in the past. they had a whole replacement for the internet worked
      out. trees worth of documnets written in languages and metalanugages where the shift was not entirely clear. all
      just to describe an ananlogue of tpc/ip

      despite is inherent us-centrism i think the ietf did a great job.

    • by XPulga ( 1242 ) on Saturday October 24, 2009 @12:01PM (#29857155) Homepage

      Hell, no! ITU has a known history of

      a) writing unreadable standards (such as G.711, the a-law, mu-law telephony codec)

      b) retarded protocols (H.323, where messages are formatted according to an hierarchy defined in 3+ different standards, and call initiation sequences have so many alternatives that it is common to have two certified H.323 endpoints refuse to talk to each other. Implementing H.323 involves thousands of lines of code. While SIP (a non-ITU protocol) uses text headers similar to email and http, can be understood from a single RFC and can be correctly implemented in a few hundred lines.)

      c) favoring patented cash troll codecs such as G.729 instead of similar patent-free ones. (Meanwhile, a lot of international phone traffic is performed in roughly-uncompressed G.711, using 10x the bandwidth because the licensing fees of G.729 are outrageous)

      That's ITU for you, and these people should be forbidden from publishing any standard whatsoever.
      • Hahahahaha !

        SIP a single RFC? Can you imagine the number of SIP related RFCs and associated drafts? SIP WAS simple, it is now a mess. Even if we restrict to RFC 3261, if you can asnwer the following questions you are already a MASTER in SIP:

        - what is the difference between request URI and the "To" header? Are they redundant?
        - what is the difference between the "Contact" header, the "P-Asserted-Identity" header and the "From" header?
        - what is the loose routign mechanism and what is the relationship with the

        • by XPulga ( 1242 )

          Mostly agreed. Still, it is possible to write a SIP endpoint based on a couple of well delimited RFCs (SIP, authentication, RTP), while even decoding the hierarchy of an H.323 message is a mess.

          As for the culture of writing in a language developers can't read, and charging for access to standards: if it depended on the ITU the Internet would not exist and sending bits across continents would be considered an expensive technological miracle, much like international phone calls 30 years ago.
    • by raju1kabir ( 251972 ) on Saturday October 24, 2009 @12:44PM (#29857465) Homepage

      This folks is one of the two UN organisations (both older than the UN) who could run the WWW better than ICANN

      1. ICANN doesn't run the www.

      2. ITU is incredibly internet-hostile. The ITU's vision of the internet is a closed network run by national telco monopolies where everything is charged for. If they had their way you'd be paying $10,000 for copies of each IETF document.

  • voltages. You know, without lugging various plugs along and all that.

    The closest to this is the humble car charger, but as far as I can tell, sadly airports and hotels I've been at don't have 12v sockets handy (maybe I didn't look hard enough and be wrong). There isn't always access to a car and in a lot of places, you don't exactly want to leave expensive electronics in one.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by drinkypoo ( 153816 )

      The plugs are annoying, but you can literally get a set for under ten bucks. It's usually not that hard to plan ahead and carry the one or two you will need for the countries you're visiting. Practically all phone chargers run on 100-240V, anywhere fom 50-60 Hz (and probably then some!) and all you need is the plug.

  • Finally (Score:3, Insightful)

    by hcdejong ( 561314 ) <hobbes@xmsn[ ]nl ['et.' in gap]> on Saturday October 24, 2009 @08:42AM (#29855829)

    It's good to have a standard, pity it's 10 years late. Also, why the hell is this not mandatory?

    • Re:Finally (Score:5, Insightful)

      by commodore64_love ( 1445365 ) on Saturday October 24, 2009 @09:10AM (#29855993) Journal

      Because the UN was never given the power to mandate an electronic design. They can offer an opinion (recommendation) but that's it.

      Nor should the UN make that grab for power, because once you go down that road, eventually the UN will start mandating what kind of roof you can install on your house. It's bad enough I have Congress telling me how much corn/potatoes I can or cannot grow in my own backyard. They were never granted that power under the Constitution, but since the mid-1930s they've exercised the power. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wickard_v._Filburn [wikipedia.org]

    • Re:Finally (Score:4, Interesting)

      by Hurricane78 ( 562437 ) <<deleted> <at> <slashdot.org>> on Saturday October 24, 2009 @11:14AM (#29856781)

      What twisted your mind into thinking, a non-elected group, that is not even remotely connected to the constitutions of the countries in it, and is none of the 3 pillars of a government, would have any jurisdiction in those countries?

      That would be totalitarian dictatorship. Plain and simple.

      Additionally, where would you go, if that totalitarian global, all-encompassing dictatorship, would happen to not like your views and actions?? There would be not other country to flee to. The concept of asylum would cease to exist.

      And you just talked about it, like it were something normal...
      I fear for this world...

    • It is really that big of deal? I have never really been bothered by a variety of Cell Phone chargers. I get a new phone every 3 or 4 years, my charger that comes with the phone usually lasts longer then the phone. The only charger I had problem with wasn't with the charger but stupid engineering by the part of Motorola where they made the connector on the phone not click in well and make it difficult to get a full charge as it will wiggle out after a few minutes. However even with standard phone chargers

      • Where the hose that goes to the toilet doesn't fit the hose that goes to the sink

        Did you try USB .... Universal-Sink-Bath connectors. For the toilet, better don't use mini-USB. :-)

  • Whew! (Score:3, Funny)

    by Cornwallis ( 1188489 ) on Saturday October 24, 2009 @08:54AM (#29855893)

    Glad to see the UN is tackling the important stuff first.

    • Re:Whew! (Score:5, Insightful)

      by bloobloo ( 957543 ) on Saturday October 24, 2009 @09:09AM (#29855991) Homepage

      Because ITU members would otherwise be working on world peace?

      • Well, they've got all of the world's telephone systems connected together, and communication is an important step towards peace...
      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        The ITU is a pretty decent organization going back to 1865 with establishment of international standards for telegraphy.

        One proposal was to put them in charge of the root name servers. It wouldn't be the worst thing that could happen.

        • One proposal was to put them in charge of the root name servers. It wouldn't be the worst thing that could happen.

          It probably would be. Within a few years, you could say goodbye to any domain name connected to content that offended anyone or facilitated end-user VoIP. Domain-name registration would cost $1000 and would require thumbprints and photocopies of your passport.

  • Important (Score:5, Insightful)

    by tsa ( 15680 ) on Saturday October 24, 2009 @09:07AM (#29855969) Homepage

    Why this was tagged !important is beyond me. This only has plus points! It is a very important step in reducing carbon- and other needless emissions. Imagine how much this saves in copper and other materials! The price of phones and other appliances can go down a small bit because the consumer doesn't have to pay for a charger every time it buys a new one. Packages become smaller so shipping new phones costs less energy. Shops can store more phones in the same space, so the chance that the phone you want is out of stock will become smaller... I could go on and on. This is a giant leap for the environment and the consumer!

    • The price of phones and other appliances can go down a small bit because the consumer doesn't have to pay for a charger every time it buys a new one.

      This assumes that the phone manufacturers will stop including a charger in every phone they sell.

      • The price of phones and other appliances can go down a small bit because the consumer doesn't have to pay for a charger every time it buys a new one.

        This assumes that the phone manufacturers will stop including a charger in every phone they sell.

        Uh, just why did you think they were doing this? Most consumers will buy the official charger even if it costs three times as much... and usually, it's at least three times as good... original chargers usually outlast phones :p

  • by haruchai ( 17472 ) on Saturday October 24, 2009 @09:07AM (#29855971)

    The Koreans carriers back in late 2005 and China a year later. It's about bloody time - the world needs less junk.

    • Yeah. Let's throw away all those proprietary chargers, and buy some new USB ones! Oh, wait...

      • by haruchai ( 17472 )

        How about this? Keep your phone instead of getting the new hotness every year or two, potentially acquiring yet another charger ( proprietary or not )

        For fuck's sake people, we managed to cross the oceans, explore uncharted territory, and go to outer space without a cell phone in every pocket.

  • by lordandmaker ( 960504 ) on Saturday October 24, 2009 @09:13AM (#29856015) Homepage
    What was wrong with the already approaching-de-facto standard of mini usb? Or is it only that popular where I am?

    Mini USB is one of those things that *everyone* has a lead for, they come with cameras and mp3 players and the like. What's better about micro usb?
    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by Jesus_666 ( 702802 )
      More plug cycles. Mini is rated for 5,000 plug/unplug cycles, micro is rated for 10,000.
      • I have had 4 digital cameras that have failed after a couple of hundred insertions using mini-USB. I know people who have gone through 3 or 4 Playstation Dualshock 3 controllers as the socket damaged in the same way. The pins usually bend downwards.

    • Durability (Score:5, Informative)

      by Yvan256 ( 722131 ) on Saturday October 24, 2009 @09:49AM (#29856241) Homepage Journal

      The newer Micro-USB receptacles are designed to allow up to 10,000 cycles of insertion and removal between the receptacle and plug, compared to 500 for the standard USB and Mini-USB receptacle. This is accomplished by adding a locking device and by moving the leaf-spring connector from the jack to the plug, so that the most-stressed part is on the cable side of the connection. This change was made so that the connector on the (inexpensive) cable would bear the most wear instead of the micro-USB device.

      - Wikipedia [wikipedia.org]

    • Just because it has the same form factor doesn't make the chargers compatible.

      Output power makes a huge difference.

      I have chargers going from 300 to 1000 milliamps, and the low powered charges don't work well in higher power draw devices.

      Moto nerfed the chargers for some of it's phones by adding a resistor that allows the phone to recognize an "unauthorized" charger.

  • Universal? (Score:3, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday October 24, 2009 @09:16AM (#29856039)

    Universal standard?

    Somebody please tell the UN that their jurisdiction is limited to this planet only, and they can't go round telling G'ould, Klimgons, Kzinti, Minbari, Mersians and Moties what to do.

  • Universal? (Score:2, Insightful)

    by bhebing ( 741840 )
    Surely they mean terrestrial, not universal. Or are we really hoping that the Xymoleians from Sirius B will adapt to this standard?
  • If it is not compulsory for phone manufacturers to include it, what is the point of approving it?

  • I hope and kind of know that they will use this for non-cellphones like mp3 players and other gadgets. It is seriously stupid the amount of chargers that exist at home...
  • Is this new standard water resistant? It has to be if it ever gets to military devices. I always though the Apple MAC power connector could easy be water resistant just by sealing the edges around where the connector meets the body during assembly. Just think, expanding that could have a universal connector for mobile devices that can survive a dunk in the pool or toilet.

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