Science & Technology

EU Commission proposes to remove charger from all smartphone boxes

In a new European Commission press release, the European Commission has announced legislation to standardize charging plugs on all consumer devices. It also plans to “harmonize” the fast charging standard and “separate the sale of chargers from the sale of electronic devices.” This proposal applies to “smartphones, tablets, cameras, headphones, portable speakers, and handheld video game consoles.”

The Commission officially proposes four things:

  • Harmonized charging port for electronic devices: USB-C is the common port.
  • Harmonized fast charging technology: It helps prevent different producers from unreasonably limiting the charging speed and ensures that the charging speed is the same when using compatible chargers for the device.
  • Separate charger sales from electronics sales: The European Commission states that EU consumers already have an average of three chargers and only use two.
  • Improved information for consumers: OEMs need to provide information on charging speeds and whether the device supports fast charging.

According to the EU Commission, European consumers spend € 2.4 billion annually on stand-alone chargers not included in the device. In addition, an estimated 11,000 tonnes of e-waste are made up of waste / unused chargers each year. The EU Commission hopes that the proposed bill could save consumers € 250 million annually by purchasing unnecessary chargers.

The standardization of fast charging is interesting. Many Chinese phone manufacturers all use different fast charging standards to compete with each other, but most manufacturers support some form of USB-C Power Delivery fast charging. Therefore, OEMs need to provide fast charging information to inform the chargers they already have at home about the expected charging speed.

IPhone 12 Pro with Lightning-USB-C cable

The proposed law will have the greatest impact on Apple. You need to switch from Lightning to USB-C. There have been rumors that Apple will make this switch for years, and while Apple’s MacBook and iPad have already switched to USB-C, the two most popular product lines, the iPhone and AirPods, continue to have Lightning cables. using. This has a negative impact on Apple’s charger and cable sales, so Apple won’t give up without a fight.

Nevertheless, the proposed legislation must be approved by normal legislative procedures (co-determination). It needs to be adopted by the EU Parliament and the Council. Once the law is approved (and if approved), OEMs will be given a 24-month transition period to transition to the new EU law.


EU Commission proposes to remove charger from all smartphone boxes EU Commission proposes to remove charger from all smartphone boxes

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