EU member states and MEPs reached an agreement on Tuesday on the introduction of a universal charger for all mobile devices in Europe from 2024. “By the autumn of 2024, USB-C will become the common charging port for all mobile phones, tablets and other mobile devices in the EU, “reads a statement from the European Parliament, Reuters reports.
While iPhone phones are charged via a Lightning port, Android devices are powered by USB-C connectors.
“By the fall of 2024, USB-C will become the common charging port for all mobile phones, tablets and other mobile devices in the EU,” said MEPs, who rejected objections from US group Apple, the maker of iPhones.
By 2024, the American group Apple will have to change the connector of the iPhone phones sold in Europe, following the introduction, for the first time in the world, of the universal charger in the EU, also writes Reuters, quoted by Agerpres. The European Commission believes that using the universal charger in the EU will make life easier for consumers and help them save money.
Half of the chargers sold with mobile phones in 2018 had a micro-B USB connector, 29% USB-C connector and 21% Lightning connector, according to a 2019 study by the EU Executive.
Thierry Breton, Commissioner for the Internal Market, estimated that the agreement would save consumers around 250 million euros.
“It will also allow new technologies, such as wireless charging, to emerge and grow without letting innovation become a source of market fragmentation and a nuisance for consumers,” Breton said.
Apple did not respond to requests for comment.
Universal charger for mobile phones, tablets, laptops, but also e-readers or headphones
Laptops will also have to meet the new requirements within 40 months of their entry into force. The agreement also covers e-readers, headphones and other technologies, which will affect device manufacturers such as Samsung and Huawei.
The idea of harmonizing chargers for phones, tablets and other mobile devices, launched by the European Commission in 2009, has so far been hampered by industry reluctance, even though the range of chargers available has shrunk considerably in the last 10 years. From about 30 in 2009, there are only three left: the Micro USB connector, which has long been used in most phones, USB-C, a newer connection, and Lightning, used by Apple.
The American group Apple strongly opposed any European regulation, which would “stifle innovation instead of encouraging it and affect consumers in Europe and the economy as a whole.”
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