The EU is Expected to Propose Legislation on a Universal Mobile Charger In September

A person familiar with the situation said on Thursday that the European Commission will introduce legislation next month to establish a single charger for mobile phones and other electronic gadgets across the 27-nation union.

Apple, more than its competitors, will be impacted by the shift. Apple’s Lightning cable powers iPhones and most of its goods, whereas Android devices use USB-C ports.

According to a Commission impact assessment report published in 2019, half of the chargers sold with mobile phones in the European Union in 2018 had a USB micro-B connector, while 29% had a USB C connector and 21% had a Lightning connector.

The EU executive is now drafting the legislation, according to the source, who did not provide any other specifics. Last year, legislators in the European Parliament overwhelmingly voted in favour of a universal charger, citing environmental benefits and customer convenience as reasons.

In 2011, Apple, Samsung, Huawei, and Nokia signed a voluntary memorandum of understanding to unify chargers for new smartphone models, resulting in a considerable reduction in the number of various chargers and a market convergence to USB 2.0 Micro-B connectors.

In 2018, the industry and the Commission attempted but failed to achieve a definitive agreement on the matter.

Apple cautioned that if people were compelled to transition to new chargers, the EU’s campaign for a standard charger would stifle innovation and result in a pile of electronic waste.

It further claimed that the regulation was unneeded because the industry is transitioning to USB-C via connectors or cable assemblies.

The Commission proposed five possibilities for a common charger in its 2019 research, three of which concerned device connectors and the other two the external power supply.

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