If the European Union seems to want to impose a universal charger for all smartphones, Apple and its iPhones do not want such standardization.
It’s a ritornello that has lasted for almost ten years! Since 2009, the European Union has tried to ensure that every smartphone, whatever its brand, is compatible with a single charger. No more micro USB and lightning port. With such a reform, all devices would charge with USB-C.
The debates were reopened in the European Parliament in mid-January. If until now, the EU simply encouraged manufacturers in this direction, without real binding measures, things could soon accelerate with the arrival of the first sanctions.
If the European Union is waging war on the different types of chargers, it is for a very simple reason: they pollute a lot. According to a report by the European Commission, they represent nearly 51,000 tonnes of waste per year. Standardizing chargers therefore means reducing their obsolescence because of their incompatibility with a new smartphone.
Apple in the European Union’s viewfinder
If such a measure should not be a problem for Android smartphones, which are gradually organizing their transition from micro USB to USB-C, Apple’s side is another story. The American manufacturer does not at all want to abandon its legendary lightning port to switch to USB-C, like the others. Justified reason or simple commercial tactic, the apple brand still puts forward some arguments against such a measure: innovation, economy and ecology.
It is in a press release relayed by the Financial Times, that Apple develops its theory: “We believe that laws which would impose uniformity in the world of smartphone charging would not stimulate innovation in this area. On the contrary. It could do a lot of harm to the economy but also penalize our users in Europe. We therefore hope that the Commission will continue to seek solutions which will not hamper the desire for innovation in the industry. “ On the ecological side, the firm believes that the standardization of researchers and, in fact, the obligation for users to renew their equipment “would create an unprecedented volume of electronic waste”.
On the one hand, more practical and more ecological use in the long term, on the other, great immediate pollution and a potential brake on innovation. It remains to be seen what the European Union thinks of these arguments.