How Eco Friendly is Your Smartphone? AT&T Wants To Tell You

Your smartphone may have no shortage of nifty gadgets and features, but what – if any – eco-friendly attributes does it possess from a hardware and material standpoint?

If you’re curious, AT&T can help.

People eager to check out the newest, fastest and coolest mobile handset devices will soon be able to learn about its environmental features, the carrier says.

That’s because a new eco-rating system is planned for launch later this year by AT&T, which developed the system in collaboration with BSR, a global business network and consultancy focused on sustainability.

“Consumers will find AT&T eco-ratings on simple, easy-to-read-and-understand labels appearing on AT&T-branded mobile devices, once they are implemented in a few months,” AT&T said Thursday.

The new system, which sets an example for industry-wide sustainability efforts, is a direct response to customer wants and needs. According to a Deloitte study on consumer trends in the purchase of sustainable products, 54 percent of surveyed shoppers consider sustainability to be one of their decision making factors.

According to details made available today, AT&T’s eco-rating system will cover attributes such as: environmentally preferable materials, energy efficiency, responsible end-of-life treatment and environmentally-responsible manufacturing.

In assigning ratings, device manufacturers will submit an assessment of each device to determine how many of 15 key criteria are met. These criteria cover everything from the percentage of recycled metals used in the device, to restriction of compounds such as lead, cadmium, mercury, nickel and antimony trioxide/antimony compounds. The overall rating represents the composite score of these environmental attributes.

AT&T plans to add the ratings icon to in-store collateral later this year.

Will the eco-friendly rating assigned to smartphones weigh on your decision to purchase – or not purchase – a particular device? Please weigh in with a thought or comment below.