The Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) has released a study in which the agency finds the cost of charging iPad and iPhone devices to be among the lowest in the electronics industry. The organization charged the iPad 3 every other day from a completely drained state and found that charging the device costs just $1.36 per year.
EPRI began the study to examine year-over-year power use in the United States but recently added the iOS study to determine how the tablets market in a “post-PC era” adds or reduces power consumption.
Researchers found that users who alternate between surfing on tablets and power-hungry desktop PCs will see their overall power consumption fall. The study also found that tablet gaming compared to PS3 and Xbox 360 systems which rely on a gaming console and TVs also leads to power reductions.
EPRI as expected also discovered that when tablets are used as adjunct devices to existing technology an increase in power consumption is generally witnessed.
With the average cost of a kilowatt-hour per device now determined the agency will launch a future study to determine if tablets are saving power or simply being used next to higher-power machines which in turn increases per user consumption overall.
To put the iOS power consumption survey into perspective, it costs $.38 per year to charge an iPhone 4 and $0.84 per year will charge your iPad 3 while a cable set-top box uses $30 worth of power and a clothes dryer consumes $105 per year. Even an “Energy Star-labeled” central air conditioning unit will run up a users bill by $140 over 900 hours of use.
Given the short periods of time required for mobile device charging the survey may not come as a surprise but it’s still nice to know that newer devices are becoming more green in nature.