Consumer electronics companies look to more environmentally-friendly products

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One of the issues that has been given some attention at CeBIT this year is creating more environmentally-friendly consumer electronics products. With ever-increasing regulations and concerns over spiralling energy usage, both in industry and amongst consumers, it’s encouraging to hear large CE companies saying that they are working to develop more energy efficient products.

Traditionally, plasma TVs have been seen as more energy-hungry than LCD ones, but apparently a demonstration between the two (though the models and sizes were unspecified) showed that the plasma used, on average, about two-thirds of the electricity of the LCD.

“The plasma set saves energy because it consumes less during darker scenes,” said Hitachi product manager Jacob Teodorsson. The LCD uses the same amount of energy regardless, whereas the plasma screen fluctuates.

The Advanced Plasma Development Centre (APDC) alliance, made up from Hitachi, Panasonic and Pioneer, claim that they are developing plasma technology that could cut the power usage of plasma screens by 75%.

A worrying trend, and something I noted in a Viewsonic TV review last year, is that a lot of new TVs cannot be fully switched off (without pulling the mains plug). Quite how this provides an incentive to consumers to turn their equipment off standby is beyond me.

For more ethical consumer news, visit our sister blog Hippy Shopper

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Andy Merrett