Finding the right charger can take the better part of an afternoon, but Europe is putting an end to this particular 21st century complaint.
After a decade of debate, the European Union has released legislation making USB-C chargers mandatory for smartphones by 2024, as European Parliament press release†
The legislation includes Apple products and could force the company to swap out its proprietary Lightning port for a standard USB-C port. In addition to smartphones, the ruling also applies to tablets, e-readers, cameras, game consoles and other gadgets.
Laptops are also the focus of the ruling, but the time frame for compliance is late and undefined.
“European consumers have long been frustrated by multiple chargers piling up with each new device,” said European Parliament Rapporteur Alex Agius Saliba. “Now they will be able to Use one charger for all your portable electronics.”
The legislation also includes language to harmonize fast-charging standards in an attempt to address future issues beyond 2024. The ruling still needs to be formally approved by the EU Parliament and Council, but it appears to be a formality.
The EU estimates the legislation will save consumers 250 euros per year in “unnecessary charger purchases” and eliminate 11,000 tonnes of e-waste per year.
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