EU Gives ‘Final Approval’ to Law That Will Force Companies Like Apple to Adopt USB-C for All of Its Devices

Omar Sohail
EU Gives ‘Final Approval’ to Law That Will Force Companies Like Apple to Adopt USB-C for All of Its Devices

The legislation requiring all companies, including Apple, to adopt the USB-C standard across a wide range of devices has received final approval from the European Union. In short, by the end of 2024, it will become mandatory for technology giants to get rid of proprietary connectors and ports and adopt a ubiquitous input that can be used with multiple accessories.

Though Apple has gravitated from Lightning to USB-C for a number of devices, including its latest low-cost tablet, the iPad 10, its biggest revenue generator, the iPhone, continues to ship with the Lightning interface, so the EU was likely targeting the firm’s phone business when it came out with this legislation.

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A press release (via MacRumors) states that the new rules will be applied to mobile phones, tablets, e-readers, digital cameras, video game consoles, headphones, earbuds, portable loudspeakers, wireless mice, keyboards, and portable navigation systems. Since Apple sells multiple products in those categories, it will likely conform to those rules or risk having to exit a market, potentially losing billions in annual revenue.

“The Council today gave its final approval to the common charger directive. This means that in 2024, a USB-C port will become mandatory for a whole range of electronic devices such as mobile phones, tablets, and headphones. It will no longer be necessary to buy a different charger every time you purchase a new mobile phone or similar device: all of them can be recharged using the same charger.”

The EU believes that adopting USB-C will also benefit the environment and prevent consumers from having to carry around multiple cables and accessories to perform roughly the same task. With USB-C being touted as a ‘common port,’ wide adoption of this interface should also reduce electronic waste.

“Having a common charger will improve consumer convenience by harmonising charging interfaces and fast charging technology, and will significantly reduce electronic waste.”

Apple is already rumored to shift to USB-C in 2023 when it launches the iPhone 15 lineup in the fourth quarter, though its other products like iPhone SE and AirPods family, continue to feature a Lightning port. Unfortunately, for the company, that might not be the case in a couple of years.

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