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European Commission to Push for Phone Charger Harmonization

| 2021-08-17 < 1 min read

European Commission to Push for Phone Charger Harmonization

Reading Time: < 1 minute

If you’ve ever been in the situation where your mobile phone is running out of power, but you forgot your charger at home – and the only one available to you has a different pin connection, the European Commission’s plans to harmonize mobile phone chargers might have a solution for you that they believe will be more convenient for consumers and better for the environment.

According to a Commission study from 2019, 50% of chargers sold in the EU are the USB micro-B type, about a third are USB micro-C, and over 20% are the so-called “Lightning cable” for charging Apple’s iPhone models.

A source tells Euractiv that next month the European Commission plans on pushing forward with its goal of phone charger harmonization within the EU, an objective that it has been mulling for the last decade. Way back in 2011, Apple, Samsung, Huawei and Nokia had agreed to harmonize chargers; their consensus led to convergence toward the USB micro-B charger, but an effort years later, in 2018, took that no further.

Some see this latest charge toward a single charger as a move against Apple, as the iPhone charger cable works exclusively with its devices and is not compatible with phones that run on the Android platform. That’s why Apple has said that any forced harmonization of chargers would squelch innovation and create more waste.

Meanwhile, the EC push towards a single charging device could also eventually apply to numerous electronic devices, anything from cordless drills to wireless headphones.

Sources: Euractiv, Express