Apple to fight EU plan for common USB-C charging for smartphones and tablets
Apple will be fighting the European Commission proposal for all smartphones tablets and headphones to all have a common USB-C charger port. This would mean Apple would have to ditch its proprietary Lightning port for iPhones sold in Europe if this ruling is put in place. The European Commission, an arm of the European Union
Apple will be fighting the European Commission proposal for all smartphones tablets and headphones to all have a common USB-C charger port. This would mean Apple would have to ditch its proprietary Lightning port for iPhones sold in Europe if this ruling is put in place. The European Commission, an arm of the European Union, says manufacturers will be required to offer a common USB-C charging port on their devices with the aim of reducing the amount of electronic waste.
This will have the greatest impact on Apple and its iPhones which connect and charge via the Lightning port with a Lightning cable. Every other smartphone and tablet maker, including the world’s number one smartphone manufacturer Samsung, already include USB-C charging ports on their products. Apple is against the European Commission proposal saying in a statement: “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 European Commission’s proposal includes unifying devices to have the common USB-C port with chargers being available to purchase separately. Apple and Samsung have already stopped including charging bricks with their latest smartphones and only include a charging cable. In Apple’s case, with the iPhone 12 and the just-released iPhone 13, customers receive a USB-C to Lightning cable. Apple’s motive with this move was an environmental one with the resulting smaller packaging requiring less shipments. And it would also prevent millions of charging bricks, which customers already owned, ending up in landfills. Yet, Apple’s iPad Pro range, its iPad Air and latest iPad Mini all have USB-C charging ports and the ability to connect other devices like cameras and external hard drives and USB thumb drives. The proposal must be ratified by EU countries and EU ministers and companies will be given 24 months to comply.
Apple is almost certain to be the only opponent of the move even though most of its iPad models already include USB-C. The iPhone has had a Lightning port since the iPhone 5 was released in September 2012 and it remains to this day with the release of the iPhone 13. Today’s iPhones also feature wireless charging and MagSafe. There have also been constant rumours that Apple would possibly be getting rid of the Lightning port altogether and only have wireless charging for the iPhone. In the past, Apple has always been the first company to do things like remove the headphone jack and not include a charging brick with the iPhone. Whether we will ever see an iPhone with a USB-C port is yet to be seen. It is more likely for Apple to remove the port altogether than adopting the same USB-C port found on Android devices.