The Ties that Bind

Posted by CJD on January 22, 2013

O2 has announced that by 2015 it’s going to stop shipping a power supply with its mobile phones – instead it’s going to just send a USB connector assuming that everyone already has something to plug it into.

O2 reckons there are 100 million unused power supplies in the UK and I reckon most of them are in my cupboard.

The USB power cable is definitely an advance as it’s now nearly universal and can be plugged into practically anything, but it’s not going to make much of a difference to the rat’s nest of kettle leads, extensions and PSUs behind my PC and HiFi/TV cabinet.

[As a minor aside, why do some hardware companies ship PSUs that are too fat or the wrong way round to fit on an extension power board? I have a 10 socket power board behind my desk – only 6 of them can be used because of this selfish PSU designs. Pffnrrr.]

Power cables are the last big challenge for the wireless world. There are ways of sending power without cables but they’re dreadfully inefficient and you have to worry a little about the possibilities of frying brains with such a device.

Apple, of course, has gone its own way with its power connectors and introduced a second, non-standard USB plug to its existing non-standard collection with the iPhone 5. This move has forced me to buy more cables and a plug converter for my car – which of course, also has its own bloody connection ‘standard’.

Come on guys – sort this mess out.

More from us: