Today, the European Parliament approved a decision requiring all electronic devices sold in the EU to have a universal charging port for years to come.
Under the new rule, all portable electronic devices sold in the EU, including mobile phones, laptops, digital cameras, headphones, video game consoles, e-readers, keyboards, mice, portable GPS devices and headsets, must have USB-C charging sockets.
The new rule will apply to mobile phones, tablets and cameras sold in the EU by the end of 2024. By spring 2026, laptops will have to meet the mandate. The new law aims to address a few issues caused by wired charging, such as environmental impacts, consumer spending, and technology ties.
Also: Using the wrong USB-C cable can damage your technology. Here’s how to avoid it
“Under the new rules, a consumer will no longer need a different charger each time they buy a new device, as they will be able to use one charger for a whole range of small and medium-sized portable electronic devices. size,” the press said. press release from the European Parliament.
In the coming years, the law will also apply to wireless charging options with the aim of increasing interoperability.
Devices too small for USB-C charging ports are excluded from the rule, such as smartwatches and fitness trackers.
The decision will put some pressure on Apple in particular, which makes charging cables that are only compatible with Apple devices. This monopolistic business model is called technology tying. This limits interoperability and has made the Apple ecosystem extremely profitable.
Apple’s devices use a single charging port, and the company makes its own charging cables for iPhones that use a Lightning connector. However, before the decision, the new iPad and MacBook Pro models switched to USB-C charging ports.
Also: Why You Shouldn’t Leave Charging Cables Plugged Into Your Power Bank
Last year, when the rule circulated in parliament, Apple disagreed with the proposal, saying the application of a universal connector “stifles innovation rather than encouraging it”, according to BBC News.
Once the European Council approves the rule, it will be published in the Official Journal of the EU and applied 20 days after publication. New devices must start following the rule after two years, and devices sold before the Journal’s publication will receive an exemption.