Nokia, a leading mobile phone manufacturer in the world, has begun the testing of an alternative mobile phone charging solution for Africa with the introduction of a portable solar charger to the Nigerian market.
The aim, the Vice President, Nokia West Africa, Mr. James Rutherfoord, said, was to ascertain the viability of the alternative solution for the African market in general and the Nigerian market in particular.
According to him, the new Nokia Portable Solar Charger, DC-40 is a pilot product designed and marketed by Nokia to test the viability of solar charging as an alternative mobile phone charging system.
He explained that the technical solution was a thin film panel, measuring 165mm x 237mm with a long cable and 2mm Nokia plug interface.
Weighing only 93 grammes, the Nokia boss described the solar charger as highly portable, adding that the solution was incredibly simple and efficient.
With one minute of charging, Rutherfoord said, consumers would get approximately two minutes of talk time.
According to him, Kenya and Nigeria provide the perfect opportunity for testing the solar charging solution with recent World Bank reports indicating that only 16 and 51 per cent of Kenyans and Nigerians respectively had regular access to electricity between 2007 and 2011. However, mobile phone usage is pervasive in these markets, calling for alternative methods of power
He said, “The solar charger is most efficient when used in direct sunlight, where the average charging time for full charge on a 1000mAh battery would be under four hours. However, the solar panel can also be used behind a glass window, but is less efficient in these conditions.”
He further said, “There are numerous advantages to this solution, including being able to service consumers outside of regular electricity supply or those who need a quick charge on the go. However, perhaps the greatest benefit is the cost saving achieved by being able to harness the natural resource of the sun.”