Apple Might Ditch Lightning Connector After Pressure From The EU

Donna Miller
August 10, 2018

For the past decade, the commission has been using voluntary agreements to encourage the tech industry to get behind a universal charger.

If you are annoyed by all the different ports, power outputs, and fast charging standards spanning various mobile phone chargers, you are not alone.

As previously reported, in 2009 fourteen phone manufacturers - including Apple, Samsung and Huawei - signed a MoU to create universal chargers for new phone models by 2011. After this agreement expired in 2012, a new letter of intent was signed by the same companies in 2013 and 2014.

While most of the smartphones available today come with micro USB or USB-C type charging ports, Apple is still continuing with lightning connector.

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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. The Commission claims the situation generates more than 51,000 tons of electronic waste yearly, mostly from old chargers that users dispose of.

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 European Commission has been championing a single charging standard for years now, but as any iPhone or Android user can attest, no discernible progress in this area has been made, nor is there reason to believe that handset makers will begin to work together in a meaningful fashion anytime soon.

The word "study" shouldn't put Apple at ease since that's the last stage that the Commission uses to determine how to punish those who don't comply, and at the end of the process, there is usually legislation that will be enforced in one way or another.

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