Apple is forced to change its charger in Europe while the EU approves the review

Apple is forced to change its charger in Europe while the EU approves the review

  • The EU Parliament approves the reform of the single charger
  • The standard is USB-C, used in Android-based devices
  • Common charging port required for new phones from fall 2024
  • Laptops will have to be single charger compatible from 2026

BRUSSELS, Oct 4 (Reuters) – Apple (AAPL.O) will have to change the charger for its iPhones in the European Union from autumn 2024 to comply with new rules introducing a single charging port for most iPhones. electronics devices.

The reform approved by an overwhelming majority in the European Parliament on Tuesday, the first of its kind anywhere in the world, potentially strengthens the EU’s role as the global regulator on telephone technology. The vote confirmed an earlier agreement between the EU institutions. read more

The new rules will make the USB-C connectors used by Android-based devices the standard in the 27-nation bloc, forcing Apple to change its charging port for iPhones and other devices.

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It will also apply to laptops starting in 2026, giving manufacturers more time to adapt, even though many already use USB-C.

Apple is expected to be the hardest hit of the big electronics suppliers to European customers, though analysts say the impact could be positive if it encourages buyers to buy the US company’s new devices rather than the old ones. They have USB-C.

Shares of European semiconductor makers rose on Tuesday after the vote, including Apple suppliers STMicro and Infineon.

The deal also covers e-readers, headsets and other technology, meaning it may also have an impact on Samsung (005930.KS), Huawei [RIC:RIC:HWT.UL] and other device makers, the analysts said.

Apple, Samsung and Huawei were not immediately available for comment.

Under the reform, mobile phones and other devices sold after the fall of 2024 will have to be compatible with the single charger, said Alex Agius Saliba, the EU lawmaker who steered the reform through the EU assembly. However, older chargers will not be banned, so customers can continue to use older models.

The large size of the EU market means that the new rules may lead to changes in other countries.

GRADUAL ELIMINATION

Saliba told a news conference that banning old chargers would have had a disproportionate impact on consumers and the environment, but noted the change is expected to lead to a phase-out of older products.

In total, 13 categories of electronic devices will have to be adapted by the fall of 2024.

The Parliament extended the original proposal of the EU Executive Commission that covered only seven types of devices. Lawmakers also added laptops starting in 2026.

Apple has warned in the past that the proposal would harm innovation and create a mountain of electronic waste.

The change has been discussed for years and was prompted by complaints from iPhone and Android users about having to switch to different chargers for their devices.

The European Commission has estimated that a single charger would save some 250 million euros ($247.3 million) for consumers.

Half of the chargers sold with mobile phones in 2018 had a USB micro-B connector, while 29% had a USB-C connector and 21% had a Lightning connector, which is the one used by Apple, a study showed. the 2019 Commission.

Apple is working on an iPhone with a USB-C charging port that could debut as early as next year, Bloomberg reported in May.

Lawmakers have also ordered the Commission to assess possible regulation of wireless charging, but an EU official said no decision has yet been made, noting that the technology is not yet mature.

($1 = 1.0106 euros)

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Reporting by Francesco Guarascio; Edited by Andrew Heavens and Catherine Evans

Our standards: the Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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