Nokia; Integrating sustainability in Design

by: Mirjam Visser, 2012-06-17 09:32:59 UTC
Sustainability Aspects: Sustainability is just good design. Minimizing resources, integrating functions to reduce energy consumption by the user

The Story

Zero waste charger

An example of integrating sustainability in design in consumer electronics.

Packaging design
Even tiny decisions can have a big impact. Ulla Uimonen, Head of Packaging, has seen Nokia packaging evolve over the years. “Since the mid-1990s we’ve been using paper-based materials which can easily be recycled and we’re trying to reduce the carton size year on year. ”Making packaging smaller and standardized means more boxes can fit on a pallet, so less delivery trucks are needed. Removing paper user guides has led to a 60% reduction in the weight of packaging and saved over 100,000 tonnes of paper. It all contributes to a smaller carbon footprint, use of fewer materials and reduced transportation costs. Cutting waste and weight makes sense both environmentally and economically.

Integral design
For Axel Meyer, Creative Lead, Advanced Design at Nokia, good design comes with responsibility, and that means taking the long-term view. That doesn’t just mean displaying recycling arrows on the box. For him and all designers at Nokia, sustainable design is integral to their whole approach. They look at how to strip away unnecessary clutter, minimise the number of parts and use the most efficient post-processing techniques. Applying this across the whole supply chain – from where materials come from through to how people build the parts.

Zero waste charger; 2/3 of energy consumed by a mobile phone is lost when the phone is connected to the net but is not loading because the battery is full already. Tje zero waste charger eliminates the problem by switching off if the battery is full and there is no loading.

The choice of materials is key. “The Nokia 700 was our greenest phone to date,” says Lihou, sr Designer at Nokia. “We chose materials for both sustainability and aesthetic appeal.” The result is a phone which is constructed from materials such as bio-plastics, recycled plastics and recycled metals. Every Nokia it can be 100% recycled once it’s no longer used.”

And although the company designs for recyling and says on its website there are 5000 spots where you can return the phones, if you link further you end up on local Nokia sites where nothing is mentioned on recycling. That needs to be improved! In Europe most communities have collection depots for IT and consumer electronics so the, often scarce and rare, materials can be recycled

Product: Mobile Phones
Designer: internatl
Manufacturer: Nokia
Category: case


Minimizing size
Mini size
Zero waste charger
Minimizing size
by Nokia

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