Universal phone charger: One charger to rule them all

Usually, when you buy a new cellphone, it comes with its own charger, which is typically unique to that phone. God forbid manufacturers had a standard plug that would work on all phones when they can make money selling you new spares and car chargers.

That's about to change. The GSMA (Groupe Speciale Mobile Association), the main association of mobile phone manufacturers, along with 17 operators and manufacturers, just announced a plan to use a standardized microUSB connector. That means future phones from Nokia, Motorola, Samsung, Sony Ericsson, LG, T-Mobile, and AT&T will all come with chargers that will work with the others' phones.

This standardized charger will be 50% more energy efficient and will eliminate tons of duplicate or obsolete chargers from landfills. Every time you buy a new phone, you won't need a new charger. Save money, save the planet. Next time you go on a road trip, you only need to pack one charger for everyone.

The plan calls for all new phones to be supported by the year 2012. Noteworthy absentee: Apple. Damn renegades.

Via The BBC