Intivation has declared 2009 a breakthrough year and the solar power mobile phone technology giant is not about to rest on its laurels.
Paul Naastepad, chief executive officer of Intivation, says GSM Association award the Netherlands based company won early this year is clear testimony that they are moving in the right direction in technology advancement.
“Intivation today is the biggest supplier of solar power conversion chip technology used in mobile phones in the world.
“What we believe is more important though – that since we won the GSM Association’s Major Innovation Award in early 2009, the whole industry seems to be more and more interested in the idea of using solar powered phones to enable people living in electricity grid deprived areas make telephone calls now!
“The year 2009 is definitely the breakthrough for our SunBoost technology, as it is currently deployed in solar phones made by ZTE and Commtiva,” said Naastepad.
He believes the world has wasted no time in embracing their products, born out of proprietary technology which enables the development of highly efficient and reliable solar powered handsets, chargers and battery packs.
“In less than six months after we launched, solar phones ‘with Intivation inside’ are now sold in eight countries by 10 operators already, both in Africa and Latin America.
“The Commtiva phone is aimed largely at the more data intensive users as it operates in GPRS, while the ZTE phone caters for the buyers seeking the lowest price,” he said.
Naastepad was clear about the advantages of the solar powered phones in a world with millions of people without access to electricity, especially in rural areas.
“Intivation’s SunBoost technology ensures that phone batteries are charged much faster than with any other solar technology.
“Phones with our technology also charge the battery in fully cloudy conditions, in which case others would not charge at all.
“In the future, many more devices will be brought to the market in Africa and beyond, some of which are high performance universal chargers that can be used with any existing phone,” he said.
Intivations’ target market, says Naastepad, is easy to identify.
“First of all it’s people living in areas without electricity, unreliable electricity or who cannot afford the electricity charges.
“And when you know that there are 1.6 billion people in the world who do not have electricity, 640 million of whom do have GSM coverage, that is quite a lot.
“Secondly, environmentally conscious people who want to take their responsibility for CO2 emission reduction.
“And thirdly, all those people who simply enjoy the comfort of a phone that never runs out of power,” he said.
Naastepad said the solar phones had made a huge impact on people.
“It brings communication to them, enabling both better trade and social welfare,” he noted.
Environmentalists, says Naastepad, have warmly received the new technology.
“Even in places where we did not expect the ‘green’ feature of solar phones to matter that much, we are surprised by how much attention the environmentalists are giving this issue.
“Of course, with a solar phone you never produce any CO2 anymore since you are using the sun to charge your phone. And the sun is even free of charge,” he said.
The Intivation CEO said they were looking forward to 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa, which he said would be a perfect platform to market their products where around 500 000 visitors from all over the world are expected to converge.
“We will continue to develop our technology to enable solar phones charge yet faster, become smaller and cheaper so that more people can benefit from our invention,” promised Naastepad.
Intivation was founded in 2003 as True Solar Autonomy, after inventor Anne Osinga found a new way to boost output voltages.