Why Universal is the Best Thing to Hit Mobile, and Where It Needs To Go

Friday, in a small hospital in Northwest Ohio something amazing happened. It’s not a new treatment for some illness, but it is something that just 2 years ago would have been impossible — I grabbed the charger for my Motorola Droid to charge up my mom’s LG feature phone.

Rather than use the proprietary connectors which were commonplace on practically every phone, but even more so on feature phones, in years past her phone had a micro USB power port for charging.

Without this nice feature my mom’s phone would have been dead for her trip home, a hassle on a normal day, but even more so in poor weather after my Father just had heart surgery.

Rather than trying to track down an odd cable from a local Verizon Store we were able to visit with him and use one of the many micro USB cables I had in my bag. The TechnoCel PowerPak made the whole process even better since we didn’t have to look for an outlet to start charging.

I know this is a little thing, but it really represents a stride for mobile technology. With manufacturers, including Apple pushing for a micro usb charging standard perhaps we really will see a future with easy access to charging, no matter what phone you have.

It would be amazing if similar advances were made for notebooks and tablets, but that’s a much tougher sell. At least Apple MacBook chargers all work with the current MacBooks, but other brands don’t always have the same charging plugs and adapters.¬†Perhaps the universal charging for notebooks will come via wireless charging laptop batteries like PowerMat showed off at CES 2011 instead of from a industry-wide coalition.

Comments

  1. Anonymous says

    I agree with your feeling about this. Some chargers are very proprietary and not easy to come by. For tablets and laptops it might cost a significant amount to get a spare and if you need a replacement it certainly will mean you will be without your device for a long time. If they could standardize on that then a lot of grief could be spared.

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