The EU institutions sold have reached an agreement on the directive that will oblige all future smartphones in the EU, including Apple’s iPhone, to be equipped with the universal USB-C port for cable charging. Smartphones, tablets, e-readers, cameras and other electronic devices assigned as an exception to the legislation by the autumn of 2024, while it was envisaged for laptops, it is set at 40 months from adoption. EU lawmakers say this is due to the difficulty of making a standard charger that applies to laptops with different power requirements.
The Internal Market and Consumer Protection Committee of the European Parliament has been working on the legislation for many years, but there have been slowdowns due to a series of objections. The strongest of the complaints came, of course, from Apple, which defended the possibility of using its Lighting connector.
Universal USB-C charger
The aim of the European institutions is, however, to favor a fast charging technology as standardized as possible, which can allow users, separated from the device, to act at the same speed with any charger. In addition, we aim to avoid having a charger in every package of a new device, in order to avoid the multiplication of electronic waste.
The EU estimates that the legislation could save consumers € 250 million per year on “unnecessary battery charger purchases” and cut electronic waste by around 11,000 tonnes per year.
The legislation has yet to be approved by the Parliament and the Council of the EU, although this step is an indicator as a formality. In a press release, the European Parliament clearly stated that the law will be in “by autumn 2024”. By that date, all devices covered by law and sold in the EU to use the USB-C cable charging port.
Apple could get around this by putting in place a wireless charging system for its upcoming iPhones (as well as other devices) marketed in Europe. According to other rumors, however, Cupertino is working on the first iPhones with a USB-C port (Apple already has a catalog of some laptop and tablet devices with this port).