Samsung unveils solar-powered television remote in token nod towards sustainability
Image credit: samsung
Samsung has unveiled a solar-powered remote control that can recharge through indoor light and which will start shipping with its new 2021 range of TVs.
The South Korean tech firm said it has introduced the new remote controls as a way to prevent a projected 99 million AAA batteries from being disposed of over the next seven years.
The remotes can be recharged by indoor light, outdoor light or USB and will be constructed with a manufacturing process that upcycles plastics from recyclable bottles, including 24 per cent recycled content.
In addition to the remote, Samsung said it was expanding its eco-packaging scheme to more of its TVs launched in 2021, which reduces text and images on the packaging in order to reduce the amount of oil-based ink used in printing.
The packaging will also have microdot patterns printed on it that are intended to help buyers reuse, customise and repurpose the box as objects around the home, such as pet houses, as part of a further effort to reduce waste.
Many tech firms are taking small steps to reduce their environmental impact, such as the recent spate of smartphone manufacturers announcing they will stop including chargers with their new products, given that most consumers already own something suitable.
Last year, Google and Apple separately announced that they aim to power all their data centres and offices with carbon-free energy by 2030.
Samsung’s new range of TVs use what it has dubbed 'Neo QLED', an improved version of its QLED system that places LEDs behind the screen in order to enable localised dimming on images and video displayed on the screen. The technology allows images to appear brighter or darker in specific spots on the screen as required by the content.
“During the past year, we have witnessed the pivotal role technology played in helping us carry on with our lives and stay connected with each other,” JH Han, president of Samsung’s visual display business, said of his company’s latest sustainability steps.
“Our commitment to an inclusive and sustainable future goes hand-in-hand with our relentless pursuit for innovation to meet consumers’ ever-changing needs, from reducing the carbon footprint of our products to providing a suite of accessibility features, to offering an unparalleled viewing experience that fits each user’s lifestyle.”
Nevertheless, pressure is ramping up on the industry to do more around sustainability, with MPs on the Environmental Audit Committee recently arguing that manufacturers should do more to collect electronic waste and improve clarity around the lifespan of devices.
This week, it emerged that the amount of unrecycled e-waste produced in the UK grew substantially in 2020 due to the imposition of lockdown restrictions and the purchase of new IT equipment for home working.
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