HTC and UK-based network operator O2 are teaming up to sell smartphones in the United Kingdom without chargers. Yes, you read that right. If you purchase an HTC smartphone in the UK through O2 in the near future, there won’t be any charger in the box.
What gives? Materials shortage? Worker revolt? Nope. Just a novel way to be more green, HTC says.
HTC and O2 estimate that in the UK alone, 70 percent of the people buying new smartphones already own a charger from another/previous device that will work with their new phone. (The initiative to offer a universal mobile phone charger in Europe might have something to do with that). That means more than 100 million chargers are sitting around, unused—in the UK alone!
If that doesn’t sound like a lot, look at it this way: Per HTC and O2, those unused chargers contain the equivalent of 18,700 components, weigh the equivalent of 1,000 London buses, and have enough copper wire and plastic covering to wrap around the O2 Arena 200,000 times. If all the unused chargers in the UK were thrown away right now, they would fill four Olympic size swimming pools. Get the picture now?
Of course, it’s also going to save HTC money – and every penny counts in the hyper-competitive cellphone market.
A charger-less smartphone from HTC is expected to appear in O2 stores soon. The phones will not be completely cordless, however. A USB-to-Micro USB cable will be included to ensure that the 30 percent of UK folks who do not have a compatible charger sitting around can charge their phone via their computers.