BT fixed-line phones get greener

The telco has launched a range of cordless phones, promising that 90 percent of its handsets will be more energy efficient by July

BT has claimed that 90 percent of its fixed-line handsets will be more energy-efficient by the second half of this year.

The telecommunications firm launched a new range of cordless phones — the BT Graphite 1500, BT Graphite 1100, BT Freestyle 610 and BT Freestyle 650 — on Monday. According to the company, the range represents the start of a £2m "commitment to improve the energy efficiency of its entire home-phone range", which will see 90 percent of that range enjoying greater energy efficiency by July 2008.

The power units in the new phones are "designed specifically to consume around half the power of previous units", BT said in a statement on Monday. A spokesperson later confirmed to that the quoted comparison was made against phones that are still currently available, rather than handsets from years ago.

BT has claimed that replacing all the existing phones it sells with more energy-efficient equivalents will cut CO2 emissions by more than 195,000 tonnes over the next three years, which is equivalent to taking 57,000 cars off the road for a year. The company has also suggested that consumers could save a total of more than £39m through lower electricity bills because of the new phones.

"BT has continued to address environmental concerns by launching phones that consume approximately half the electricity of previous models; this will make a major contribution to the reduction of CO2 emissions," said BT's group managing director, Gavin Patterson, on Monday. "We know that our customers are just as keen to reduce environmental impact and, through these phones, we will jointly make a significant difference."

Reduced electricity consumption is not the phones' only difference to their predecessors, according to BT — each handset will also come in less packaging than has previously been used. The user guides for the phones have also been replaced with smaller "quick-start" leaflets, with the more detailed versions now available online. The full user guides can also be requested by phone.