The days of searching for the right phone charger could be coming to an end, with the European Union proposing a standardised cord for Apple and Android devices alike.
Under the European Commission’s new proposal, all smartphones, tablets, cameras, headphones, portable speakers and handheld videogame consoles on the market must come compatible with a USB-C charger.
This would of course have the greatest impact on Apple, which currently only allows users to charge iPhones with a ‘Lightning’ cable.
Android devices are commonly charged with a USB-C charger.
The Commission has also proposed the unbundling the sale of chargers and devices in an effort to reduce wastage and is pushing for harmonised fast charging technology.
And while the proposed changes might be seen as an attack on Apple products, the European Commission says it’s all about reducing electronic waste.
“European consumers were frustrated long enough about incompatible chargers piling up in their drawers,” Commission Vice-President Margrethe Vestager said.
“We gave industry plenty of time to come up with their own solutions, now time is ripe for legislative action for a common charger. This is an important win for our consumers and environment and in line with our green and digital ambitions.”
Apple has since responded to the proposal, citing concerns around how such changes could impact innovation.
“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.
For the proposal to actually be adopted across Europe, it will need to be adopted by the European Parliament and the Council by ordinary legislative procedure.
The Commission has said it will give phone makers a 24-month period to make the transition.
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