This shouldn't really come as a surprise, but Sprint and Samsung have managed to snag a Platinum level rating from the UL Environment testing group for the Samsung Replenish mobile phone. I say it shouldn't be a surprise because Sprint announced in January that it has been very involved in working the UL Environment on a way to test mobile phones for their environmental credentials.
The Replenish, which Sprint released in April, is its first "green" smartphone. It is also the first phone to be rated by UL Environment. Platinum is the highest rating that the organization will give out; its testing covers a number of factors, everything from the materials that go into a mobile phone's design to the amount of power it uses (and how closely that can be managed) to the network that it rides on to the disposal options that the manufacturer and carrier offer for the product's end-of-life phase. Innovation and packaging are also considerations. Technically speaking, the criteria are currently in an interim phase.
Will people start picking their mobile phone based on their green credentials? It would sure take a lot for someone to pry my Apple iPhone out of my hand, but all other factors being equal, it's a great differentiator for Sprint and Samsung to target, and I'll be taking a look at the Replenish as soon as I can.