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Mobile Charging

February 18, 2009

There has been much press today about how the mobile phone companies have standardised on a single charger and cable interface for future mobile phones. This will obviously simplify the whole mobile situation when you are in need of quick charge and have not brought your charger with you – you can borrow one, but apparently it will also lead to further cost reduction for the manufacturer and consumer, but also less profit as accessories are standardised (although the manufacturers can through other wrenches into the problem like strange positioning of the connectors on the phone so a standard base station cannot be used etc).

However this is all old news, with many of the same manufacturers in the announcement today from the Mobile World Congress announcement having already announced standardisation to Micro USB in 2007, with thanks to Pocket PC Thoughts for the article.

It is a shame that they did not standardise on Mini USB, at least for me as all of my mobiles, several of my MP3 players and some bluetooth headsets are Mini-USB charged, but I can understand that there is a deep need to use a smaller connector. I just hope that it is robust enough. At the end of the day, it will just mean that I will need to buy a number of USB2 A type to USB Micro cables for the new devices or have an adapter – when I get a phone that has the new adapter that is. By the way, the Micro USB is the far left one in the picture, next to the mini-USB.

This leads into one of the best pieces of advice to a mobile worker – make sure your current device is standardised to either Mini or Micro USB, so that you can share cables and chargers quite liberally – it has allowed me to really reduce down what I need to carry. After all, I just (wastefully) turn my laptop into a universal charger when i am away, and even have a simple mobile boost system with my EeePC as it has active power USB ports when in standby – allowing the charging of mobiles even when it is closed and in my bag :-).

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