Virtualization, Cloud, Infrastructure and all that stuff in-between

My ramblings on the stuff that holds it all together

Universal Power Supply for all your Electronics


Engadget has a write up of a great new idea here, a universal and intelligent power brick from Green Plug that is capable of charging devices and shutting down when complete to save the planet, as well as display how much power is/has been consumed.

it’s an excellent and long overdue idea; unfortunately it requires the devices themselves to be aware and compatible – this area of technology cries out for an open standard to aid adoption in the same way that interfaces like USB and Ethernet have become ubiquitous.

I wonder  if the “green” lobby and consumer awareness of efficient power usage will help to encourage this and push it on the market place, although it does look like the Green Plug technology is a single vendor owned and licenced solution, rather than an open standard – which would make buy-in from manufacturers difficult.

Getting buy-in from the major, competing manufacturers to adhere to a public standard must be an easier approach than a single partner – who could thus obtain a monopoly.

Although, as Engadget point out all the device manufacturers currently make a fortune from selling replacement power supplies so will they really be that bothered?

I for one would be happy to pay £50-75 UK pounds for a smart, universal power supply and for my various electronic devices to come without one in the box – I would simply buy one or two chargers as I need (maybe one for home one for the bag).

Even better if the charger is like a USB hub and can connect/charge several devices at once (ideal for a travel scenario), adopt the interchangeable plug method that Apple and Blackberry use for their chargers to support different countries/outlet types.

Reduces waste, power consumption and the big box of random and unidentifiable power supplies I have in my study!

Sadly this much collaboration between competing electronics companies for a “standard” doesn’t always have a good history (Betamax/VHS HD-DVD/Blu-Ray) ah well, I live in hope….

One response to “Universal Power Supply for all your Electronics

  1. Gabriel Anzziani November 15, 2010 at 2:45 pm

    At least a first step towards standardizing the charging of devices is the move to use microusb on new mobile phones.

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