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Five European MNOs launch labelling scheme for smartphones

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Five of Europe’s leading mobile operators – Deutsche Telekom, Orange, Telefónica, Telia and Vodafone – have teamed up to update and launch a new industry-wide Eco Rating system  and motivate vendors to minimize the impact that their devices have on the environment.


The Eco Rating labelling scheme is designed to supply detailed and accurate information to retailers on the effects that manufacturing, usage, transportation and disposal of smartphones have on the environment. This Eco Rating will encourage operators and customers to rate phones more extensively and underline the need for more sustainable electronic devices.


From June 2021, mobile operators will start introducing Eco Rating at points of sale in 24 European countries, including the UK. The labeling system will label phones with scores to show how ecological and environment friendly the appliances are in their lifecycle. The score will be from 0 to 100, the higher the score, the better the environmental performance.


The Eco Rating label will underline five main characteristics making up the sustainability of mobile devices. These include device durability, repairability, recyclability, climate efficiency and resource efficiency. To date, 12 mobile phone brands are taking part in the program, including Bullitt Group, Doro, Huawei, MobiWire, OnePlus, OPPO, Samsung Electronics, Xiaomi, ZTE and HMD Global.


The Chief Executives of the five mobile operators, Tim Höttges (Deutsche Telekom), Stéphane Richard (Orange), José María Álvarez-Pallete (Telefónica), Allison Kirkby (Telia Company) and Nick Read (Vodafone Group), commented on the launch:


 “Building a more sustainable future is our joint responsibility, so we believe the time is right to drive a harmonized, industry-wide Eco Rating Scheme that will improve transparency and help raise awareness of the environmental impact of the phones that our customers choose. We look forward to welcoming more manufacturers and telecom operators to the Eco Rating initiative in the future, and we hope it will inspire the whole industry to accelerate its transition towards a more circular model for mobile phones.”


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