As smartphone manufacturers pursue more environmentally friendly devices, some customers want to easily seek out phones that have been built under green principles. In Europe, major networks are banding together on a new Eco Rating system for both smart and features phones.

Vodafone became the latest company to commit to the rating, joining other giants like Orange, Telefonica, Deutsche Telecom, and Telia Company. In total, there are 12 smartphone manufacturers are joining the initiative which will debut in Europe during June.

As the Eco Rating name suggests, it will rate mobile phones based on the environmental impact they make. Vodafone says the 12 companies committed to the rating are: HMD Global (Nokia), Bullitt Group (Motorola and CAT rugged phones), Doro, Lenovo/Motorola, Huawei, MobiWire, ZTE, Xiamoi, Oppo, Alcatel, OnePlus, and Samsung.

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Yes, Apple is conspicuous by its absence.

Rating System

Smartphones and feature phones built by the above companies will be rate on the following five factors:

  • “Durability – Covers the robustness of the device, the battery life and the guarantee period of the device and its components.
  • Repairability – Covers the ease with which the device can be repaired, including mobile phone design and supporting activities that could increase the useful life of the product by improving its repairability, reusability and upgradability potential. A higher the score indicates how these aspects are supported.
  • Recyclability – Covers how well the device components can be recovered and disassembled, the provided information to allow it, and how well its materials can be recycled.
  • Climate efficiency – Assesses the GHG (greenhouse gas) emissions during the whole life cycle; the better the score here, the higher the contribution to climate protection.
  • Resource efficiency – Assesses the impact caused by the amount of scarce raw materials required by the device (e.g. gold for the manufacturing of electronic components) towards the resources depletion; the better the score here, the lower the impact is towards the availability of materials.”

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