According to new EU guidelines aimed at reducing waste and simplifying life for consumers who own numerous devices, Apple Inc. may have to modify its iPhones to utilize USB-C charging connections.
According to the European Commission, all smartphones and tablets, as well as cameras, certain headphones, portable speakers, and handheld video consoles, should utilize a single type of charging connector.
“With more and more devices, more and more chargers are sold that are not interchangeable or not necessary,” said Thierry Breton, the EU’s industry chief, in an emailed statement. “We are putting an end to that.”
Apple opposes a common connection, claiming that it will stifle innovation that may lead to more energy-efficient devices. The proposed law adds to the EU’s recent pressure, which has included antitrust investigations into its app store and payment system, as well as a court battle over a hefty back-tax obligation.
Apple is “concerned that strict regulation mandating just one type of connector stifles innovation rather than encouraging it,” according to an emailed statement. The Cupertino, California-based company said it “deeply cares about the customer experience” and shares the commission’s “commitment to protecting the environment.”
Last year, Apple began eliminating adapters from packaging in order to decrease waste. While some of the company’s gadgets employ USB-C, iPhones and select accessories come with their own Lightning cord and magnetic chargers.
‘Not Aimed at Apple’ is a phrase that means “not aimed at Apple.”
Apple isn’t “necessarily concerned” about the draught guidelines, according to Breton, who spoke to reporters in Brussels. He claims he has a regular touch with Apple CEO Tim Cook, who has never raised the problem.
“It’s not aimed at Apple or anyone else,” he said at a press conference. “We are thinking about the 15 to 20 years to come. Apple already uses USB-C in other devices” and “I don’t think it’s going to cause anyone any problems.”
According to the EU, people spend about 2.4 billion euros ($2.8 billion) every year on standalone chargers that aren’t included with their gadgets. It is estimated that consumers will save 250 million euros per year by not purchasing new chargers. According to the study, people possess up to three chargers and find mismatched chargers irritating.
Under his regulations, all chargers would charge at the same rate. Phone manufacturers may still be able to sell phones with chargers if they also sell phones without one. They can also offer products that come with a cord but no electrical socket. Devices may have several ports as long as one of them was USB-C.
According to the European Commission, the EU discards 11,000 tonnes of chargers per year, some of which are useless. It anticipates a reduction of about 1,000 tonnes as a result of the plan.
The regulations may take effect two years after being approved by EU legislators and governments, who have the ability to make modifications to the draught text.
Wireless charging is not mentioned in the EU plan. Because of their tiny size, regulators opted not to include earphones, smartwatches, and fitness trackers.