Wednesday, September 01, 2010

Charger, Charger, Everywhere! Not A Phone To Charge!

Considering that the life of a mobile phone is about two years, the one thing that outlasts its purpose is the humble mobile phone charger. Most of the others, like the head phone, batteries, data cable...either meet their ends before or rather not kept as memorabilia. That distinction somehow goes, quite naturally, to the charger. It is one accessory that is the most essential for a mobile life. Yes, battery is. But battery is an 'integral' part of the handset, whereas the charger has high visibility in our daily lives.

Over the last couple of years, at home, we have manged to build a museum. While the defunct handsets themselves get tucked deep into some drawer, the chargers have managed to be on the 'surface'. They usually get bundled at one single place with the chargers currently in use. Now, when you have to retrieve one, you are faced with a situation reminiscence of the programs on sexual habits of snakes in Discovery and Animal Planet! Yes, you could also imagine noodles or spaghetti.

It could be also a behavior peculiar to myself. But then, it led me to wonder as to why can't there be standards in phone chargers! I am sure you would have gone through this experience at some point or another when your phone will be low on charge and you will go searching for a charger. But as life would have it, that particular day, no one would have the charger for your phone. Alas, it leads to mobile comatose.

I wonder if this would come under the purview of International Telecommunication Union? Or would Mobile Manufacturers Forum be responsible for such initiatives?

While, I will have to admit that am not technically qualified, but have enough grey matter to deduce that standardization is not an impossible mission. But why would there be different types of chargers in the first place? Manufacturers might claim that they use a different type battery hence a different type of charger. I doubt it. I strongly believe that in the technology world anything and everything can be standardized. Now, the mobile brands might just be doing this in the name of differentiation and customer lock-in. I am not sure if both make sense. 

But thankfully, looks like the world is already moving in that direction. Imagine a world where you do not have to worry about carrying a charger along when you travel because you will certainly find a pin, pretty much like you find a pen to fill those slips when visiting a bank. The Total Cost of Ownership of mobile phones will come down. And most importantly, the e-waste might reduce considerably.

Most importantly, I would not have to see different breeds of charges rolled up in compromising positions at home!

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