EU settles to force iPhone and AirPods to adopt USB-C by 2024

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The European Union has reached a landmark deal to force a USB-C port to charge a wide range of consumer electronics, including the iPhone and AirPods, by 2024.

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one in Press releaseThe European Parliament’s Committee on Internal Markets and Consumer Protection announced that it has reached an agreement to introduce a law to make USB-C the common charging port in a large number of consumer electronics by the autumn of 2024.

The proposal, known as the Directive, would force all consumer electronics manufacturers selling devices in Europe to ensure that all new phones, tablets, laptops, digital cameras, headsets, handheld video game consoles and portable speakers have USB- C port. regardless of manufacturer. The discount will only apply to devices that are too small to offer a USB-C port, such as smartwatches, health trackers and some sports equipment, but the law will extend to other devices such as laptops over time.

This “common port” will be the first in the world and will particularly shock Apple, as it widely uses the Lightning connector instead of USB-C in many of its devices. MEPs say the move will reduce e-waste, ensure product sustainability and make it more convenient to use different devices.

The EU also wants to ensure that wireless charging solutions are interoperable as the technology evolves over time. The new directive proposes empowering the European Commission to develop delegated acts that mandate companies to make their personal wireless charging solutions more open and compliant with interoperability standards, thereby preventing consumers from being locked into charging solutions. Helps to escape. while avoiding fragmentation and minimizing waste. It is unclear whether this will include Apple’s MagSafe charging system for iPhone and AirPods, as it is based on the Qi wireless charging standard.

In 2018, the European Commission tried to reach a final solution on the issue, but it failed to become law. At the time, Apple warned that forcing an industry-common charging port would stifle innovation and create e-waste as consumers were forced to switch to new cables. The EU effort led last year with the European Commission in an updated version of the Directive. In April, the Committee on Internal Markets and Consumer Protection voted in favor of the directive, with 43 votes in favor and only two against.

The law still needs to be formally approved by the European Parliament and the European Council later this year. It will come into force 20 days after its publication in the Official Journal of the European Union, and its provisions will begin to apply to new instruments after 24 months.

Both Apple analysts Ming-Chi Kuo and bloombergMark Gurman has said that Apple is testing a version of the iPhone that has a USB-C port instead of a Lightning port. Kuo thinks Apple may switch the iPhone to USB-C with the iPhone 15 in 2023, before making changes to AirPods and other accessories later. This period will allow Apple to switch its affected devices to USB-C before the EU directive takes effect.

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