It’s looking even more likely iPhones will soon drop lightning cables, as all smartphones sold in the European Union will have to use USB-C ports by fall 2024. This will include Apple’s iPhone and other electronic devices such as portable video game consoles, tablets, laptops, etc.
According to The Verge, this legislation has been in the works for more than a decade, with both parties agreeing to make the change. The legislation will still need to be approved by both the European Union Parliament and Council later this year, though it seems very likely the law will pass.
It was previously reported that the current Apple products that still use lightning chargers are Airpods, Apple TV remote, the MagSafe battery pack, the MagSafe Duo charger, and the iPhone. The iPad Pro, iPad Air, iPad Mini, and Macs have already switched to USB-C.
Last year Apple openly criticized the move, telling Reuters that the legislation “stifles innovation rather than encouraging it, which in turn will harm consumers in Europe and around the world.”
The European Union decided to introduce a “common charger” to reduce e-waste while making things easier for consumers. The European Union predicts that the new legislation will save buyers €250 million euros per year and reduce e-waste by 11,000 tons.
A European Union press release states the new legislation is applicable to devices “that are rechargeable via a wired cable.” So Apple could get around this new legislation by creating a portless iPhone, but that seems unlikely because wireless charging isn’t as reliable and has trouble syncing with other devices.
The only part of the legislation that hasn’t been worked out yet was the charging standard for laptops. Phone companies will have 24 months to switch to USB-C, while computer companies will have 30 months to make the change. This is primarily because laptop chargers use different power requirements.
The products discussed here were independently chosen by our editors.
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