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Phone charger energy rating scheme launched

Efficient phone chargers to save energy and money

Mobile phone energy consumption chart

Nokia, Samsung, Sony Ericsson, LG and Motorola are behind a new scheme which rates mobile phone charger efficiency on a one to five star scale.

As with household appliances such as fridges, dishwashers and ovens, the rating will enable consumers to compare and choose between different brands and models to make an informed energy-efficient choice.

The new rating system shows how much energy each charger uses when left plugged in to a live socket, but not connected to a mobile phone handset. The most efficient chargers score five stars, while the worst performers score no stars.

Nokia claims two-thirds of mobile phone energy is wasted 

If left plugged into the socket, chargers continue to use a small amount of electricity even if the phone is disconnected. Though the power used is generally less than 0.5W, even for the most energy-hungry charger, Nokia claims around two-thirds of the electricity used by mobile phones is wasted this way.

“If the three billion people owning mobile devices today switched to a four or five-star charger, this could save the same amount of energy each year as produced by two medium sized power plants,” according to Nokia.

Which? technology expert Al Warman said: ‘0.5W may not seem like a lot, and if left on for a whole year this could cost you around 50p, but if everyone does this it adds up to a significant waste of energy. The best way to minimise your energy usage, of course, is to switch off all appliances when not in use.’

Which? has energy-saving advice and reviews of the latest mobile phones, plus our reviews of TVs and digital radios take into account standby energy consumption so you can choose an efficient model.

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