The EU Wants To Make A Push For Standardised Mobile Phone Chargers

EU charger

The EU may force Apple to drop the Lightning connector

The EU will reportedly commence a study to decide whether there's a need for new action, whilst analysing the effect of other options.

A leaked email suggests the European Commission will revive efforts forcing manufacturers to standardize smartphone chargers, after previous commitments were simply disregarded. Unfortunately, the signed agreement did not work as planned.

As per Reuters, EU Competition Chief, Margrethe Vestager, asserts a lack of progress by phone makers has limited the achievement of a universal charging standard, with regulators now conducting further analysis. Fast forward to 2018, and Apple is using its Lightning port, some are using USB-C, others are still on micro USB, and so on.

Nearly a decade ago, we had most phone vendors using their own chargers and ports, which made charging devices a hassle especially if you've left the charger at home and also led to accumulation of unwanted chargers e-waste.

The EU began taking the voluntary approach to "harmonize" mobile phone charging technology with an agreement that smartphone vendors, including Apple, signed in 2009.

Unless the EC forces Apple to dump its Lightning adaptor, it's unlikely to do so itself, given the amount of cash it makes from users having to cough up for its proprietary accessories, on top of the licensing fees it makes from third-party firms using its connector. But given the limitations of micro-USB that did not allow it to keep pace with technological developments, Apple opted to develop its own Lighting Connector that offered various advantages over micro-USB including a fully reversible connector, increased bandwidth, screen mirroring over HDMI, and high quality audio transmission.

European Union regulators plan to study whether there is a need for action in the push for a common mobile phone charger following a lack of progress by phone makers towards this goal, European Union competition chief Margrethe Vestager said.

Latest News