The European Union (EU) has announced it is planning to compel the makers of smartphones all over the world to adopt a uniform charging cord for all mobile devices. The new plan is probably expected to reduce the hassles of rummaging through packs of tangled cord and cables to find the right one for the desired phone.
The European Union is proposing a legislation that would force all smartphone manufacturers to have a USB-C cables for charging all devices.
Although many device makers are beginning to adopt this technology, Apple is not finding it funny. Apple said it was concerned that the new rules has the tendency to limit innovation and end up affecting consumers negatively. iPhones on its own is infused with its own lightning charging port, even though new models will be adorned with cables that can get plugged into a USB-C socket.
The latest move by EU was greeted with enthusiasm by millions of people over the world who have earlier struggled through packs of cables to find the one that perfectly suits their phone. The European Union is also with this move aiming to cut down on the 11,000 metric tons of electronic waste thrown out every year by Europeans.
According to them, an average EU resident owns at least three chargers, uses two of them regularly with a data of 38 percent of the people sampled claiming not to be able to power their phones at least once as they could not get hold of a compatible charger.
The proposed rules also championed the standardisation of fast charging technology, the leverage for consumers to have the option of choosing whether to purchase new devices with or without a charger, an option the EU figures will save consumers an estimated 250 million euros a year.
With 410 million mobile devices sold in the EU last year, the European Union executive commission is on themarch to ensure industry stakeholders adopt a common standard, in a bid to reduce the dozens of charging plugs to a handful.
The European Union Internal market commissioner, Thierry Breton opined:
“Chargers power all our most essential electronic devices. With more and more devices, more and more chargers are sold that are not interchangeable or not necessary. We are putting an end to that. With our proposal, European consumers will be able to use a single charger for all their portable electronics – an important step to increase convenience and reduce waste”.
Once the new rules take effect, manufacturing companies will have up to two years to adapt to them and they would apply only to electronics sold in the European single market’s 30 countries, but, just like the EU’s strict privacy regulations, as they could end up becoming a standard for the rest of the world.
Apple in a statement said it aligns with the EU’scommitment to protecting the environment but did not fall short to ask whether the proposals would help consumers.
“We remain concerned that strict regulation mandating just one type of connector stifles innovation rather than encouraging it, which in turn will harm consumers in Europe and around the world,” the company said in a statement.
But EU through Breton denied that the new rules would slow innovation.
“If Apple wants to continue to have their own plug, they will have the ability to do it. It’s not against innovation, it’s just to make the lives of our fellow citizens a little bit more easy,” Breton said at a press briefing in Brussels, noting that smartphone makers can still add two different ports on their phones if they so wish, adding that the proposals would allow for updates to keep pace with advances in technology.
The proposed law, still to go through scrutinization and approval by the European Parliament would mandate device makers of phones, tablets, digital cameras, handheld video game consoles, headsets and headphones sold in the European Union to lace it with USB-C charging ports, with the exception of Earbuds, smartwatches and fitness trackers.