On Sunday, Samsung's Evergreen phone officially went on sale for AT&T customers. It's the latest member of Samsung's growing family of eco phones. Off the bat, the Evergreen's black casing looks more "grown-up" than its Restore and Reclaim siblings' bright green outfit, and it's made from 70 percent post-consumer recycled materials to boot.
The phone features a full, slide-out keyboard, 3G capabilities, a 2-megapixel camera and camcorder and a 2.4-inch display. Its $30 price-tag (after mail-in rebate and a two-year commitment) is music to the ears for customers that are in the market for a basic messaging phone. In addition, Samsung will donate $1 to Cell Phones for Soldiers, a nonprofit that has distributed millions of prepaid calling cards to soldiers overseas.
"Samsung Mobile is committed to making our products more eco-friendly, and we are proud to offer AT&T customers an eco-centric device with an impressive feature set and stylish design,” said Omar Khan, chief strategy officer, Samsung Mobile.
“The Evergreen is made of 70 percent post-consumer recycled plastics and as a whole is 83 percent recyclable. It also features reduced and recyclable packaging, a CD to replace the user manual and an Energy Star qualified charger."
Samsung has already made its mark on the green tech industry with its line of eco-friendly cell phones. Its Restore and Reclaim cell phones for Sprint were well-received in the eco-media world, and customers gave it average reviews. The overall designs of the two devices are simple enough for a messaging phone that doesn't rely heavily on the bells and whistles of Internet surfing and extensive libraries of apps.
We can't rattle off a list of Samsung's green efforts without mentioning its Blue Earth phone. Released in South Korea in 2009, it was the first solar-powered cell phone with a full touch-screen, featuring a hard-to-miss electric blue casing that screamed innovation. Designed to symbolize a flat, shiny pebble, the phone was outfitted with a solar charger on its back and made from recycled PCM plastic extracted from water bottles.
Until the Evergreen's launch, Sprint has been the primary company to embrace Samsung's green efforts here in the U.S., AT&T says this new partnership with Samsung will further support its goal to provide simple sustainable solutions for its customers. Earlier this year, AT&T debuted the ZERO charger, which shuts itself off when a device is removed, even if the charger is still plugged into the wall.
The company also hosts an impressive recycling program for its defunct electronics. In 2009, AT&T collected more than 4.2 million cell phones for reuse and recycling and more than 1.8 million pounds of batteries and accessories. AT&T offers customers three ways to donate old cell phones and accessories: drop-off bins in its 2,000-plus retail locations; free, prepaid mailing envelopes available in the stores and postage-paid mailing labels available via its website at AT&T Reuse & Recycle.