Market for Green Gadget Chargers Brightens

Markets for advanced charging technologies (including solar-powered handsets, solar chargers, wireless power units, fuel-cell battery charging products and public charging kiosks), worth about $1.5 billion in 2010, are forecast to grow at a robust Compound Annual Growth Rate of more than 86 percent to exceed $34 billion in 2015.

As people carry and use increasing numbers of portable electronic devices, they have a growing need to charge their batteries on the go.

Today's road warriors can tell you it's not always feasible to plug a mobile phone handset into a wall outlet or car adapter for a quick charge.

The Solio solar charger can power mobile phones.
The Solio solar charger can power mobile phones.
That is why a number of vendors are developing and commercializing advanced charging technologies that can top up batteries wirelessly or using solar or wind power, or which provide for a fast download of electricity while waiting for one's flight.

Research director Larry Fisher of NextGen, ABI Research's emerging technologies research incubator, says, "With developers about to release advanced charging products in late 2010 and the first half of 2011, the advanced charging revolution is about to take off.

"In addition, the Wireless Power Consortium's release of the Qi standard for interoperable wireless charging in 2010 has set the stage for portable electronics manufacturers and infrastructure producers such as Panasonic, Philips, Samsung, LG and Nokia to incorporate the technology into their products."

Some of these technologies are particularly applicable to users in developing countries.

Parts of the Middle East and Africa, for example, do not have access to stable power, and mobile phone users must travel many miles and pay to charge up.

Solar chargers and handsets could make a real difference to the lives of people in such circumstances, even though they're currently being marketed primarily to the eco-conscious in the developed world.

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