Smartphones go green

With Earth Day approaching, perhaps you’ve thought about ways to green up your lifestyle. Using less water, turning lights off when not in use and recycling plastics and paper are great ways to start, but technology innovations provide another option too. Here’s a list of environmentally friendly phones, from the packaging used, the materials the phone is constructed of and even its energy consumption.

Sprint has announced the LG Viper, an LTE compatible device that will release soon with preorders beginning April 12. In addition to supporting a faster network, the phone is also constructed from 50 percent recycled plastic, letting consumers feel a bit better about their products. Sprint announced that its 4G LTE network will launch in Atlanta, Baltimore, Dallas, Houston, Kansas City and San Antonio. The Viper will use Android 2.3 Gingerbread platform, is equipped with a 1.2 GHz dual-core processor and 1 GB of RAM.

According to, the phone also meets and surpasses many green standards:

  • It is RoHS compliant, meaning it is free from many potentially hazardous materials such as PVC, phthalates, halogens and mercury.
  • The packaging contains up to 87 percent of post-consumer paper, uses soy ink, is made with a glueless construction and is 100 percent recyclable.
  • The phone also includes a charger that exceeds the EC Code of Conduct on energy efficiency when it comes to no-load consumption. Unlike other chargers, LG Viper 4G LTE’s charger only consumes 0.03 watts of power when plugged into a wall socket without being connected to the phone.

Sprint has released other eco-conscious phones in the past, including the Samsung Replenish, and ranked in the top 20 on Newsweek’s 2011 list of the 500 greenest companies. released a list of the most eco-friendly phones, and the iPhone 4s came in at number one. The website selected Apple’s newest phone for many reasons, including a mercury-free LED-backlit display, arsenic-free display glass, recycled packaging  and a high efficiency charger, which gained media attention recently as the New iPad came out. Apple’s website also details the company’s carbon footprint for consumers.

But if a visibly noticeable environmental effort is what you seek, perhaps accessories that allow solar charging are more your style. Many solar chargers are available on the market, including the Kiwi Solar USB portable charger available on It claims versatility by allowing the user to attach a variety of devices, including the iPhone.

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