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Samsung Blue Earth: The plastic-bottle phone

Ever wondered what happens to your water bottles when you put them in the recycling bin? They get turned into mobile phones, of course

In an attempt to help consumers be more eco-friendly, Samsung has come up with the Blue Earth, a pebble-shaped, solar-powered touchscreen phone. The Blue Earth is free from harmful substances such as beryllium and phthalates, and is made out of recycled water bottles.

On the back of the Blue Earth, you'll find a solar panel designed to harness the sun's energy and pump it into the phone's battery. To add to the Blue Earth's green credentials, there's easy access to controls for screen brightness and backlight duration, as well as an energy-efficient Bluetooth mode, so that you can save power. It even features an 'eco walk' function that uses a built-in pedometer to show you by how much walking, instead of driving, reduces CO2 emissions.

Samsung is also keen to point out that the Blue Earth's packaging is made from recycled paper and the charger uses less than 0.03W in standby mode.

This all sounds good but we hope it isn't just a marketing gimmick and this technology goes into all Samsung phones, rather than just a few.

We haven't seen a Blue Earth in the flesh yet but, next week, we'll get a glimpse of it at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona. We're particularly keen to test out the interface and have a gander at the solar panel, about which we're slightly sceptical.

Make sure to read Crave next week, when we'll get hands-on pics with the Blue Earth and many other scorchingly hot new phones.