Intivation today launched the world’s first low-cost solar-powered mobile phone.

The Dutch company uses an innovative converter that takes 0.5v from a solar cell and steps it up to the 3.7v needed for any lithium ion mobile phone battery.

Intivation’s technology combines a single solar cell with its chip software. It can function on any handset.

UPDATE: Intivation has just been announced as the winner of the GSMA’s 2009 Mobile Innovation Global Award competition’s EMEA tournament for the most innovative wireless device-centric technology.

Paule Naastepad, Intivation’s CEO, told it offered charging even in low-light conditions while also being effective in high temperatures.

He said that in terms of performance the technology provided a 193 per cent improvement in average light, tilt, angle and shading.

Intivation also announced a solar-powerd charging case for the iPhone, which it says more than doubles battery use. 

The Intivation technology is being used in a ZTE-made handset, the Coral-200 Solar, which is being deployed by the Digicell Group from this June.

It will be targeting emerging markets where there an estimated 640 million people with network coverage but without a reliable electricity supply.

For operators, Naastepad said there was the potential to increase ARPU by more than 10 per cent, largely because if a mobile was constantly charged it was more likely to be used.

Other advantages include: 

  • technology allows for a small cell
  • cheaper to manufacture
  • looks better
  • faster charging more reliable

Subscribe to our Newsletter