Phone running out of battery, battery charger at home and nobody with a compatible cable. An image for many terrible and often a representation of a real event. For a long time there has been talk of the possibility of introducing universal charging, and perhaps it could be the right time.
The EU has affirmed in the last few hours that it has finally found the right way, with all due respect to those who still oppose this decidedly radical change. It doesn’t matter if the brand of your own smartphone it will be Apple, Samsung, Xiaomi or another: any charger must be suitable for the device to be recharged.
It will not be something immediate, however, even if the plans of theEU they will be followed to the letter and without postponements there is talk of waiting until 2024. Better late than never? It depends, because there is no lack of discordant voices that oppose the universal charger.
Universal charger: expected, but not by everyone
That the debate around the universal charger is on is known to most. However, the central issue is often dismissed quickly without really making it clear what lies behind this dissent. Let’s say that roughly the main antagonist of the measure is Apple, that of its technology Lightning has made its own distinctive brand. Both intended as recharging and as device connectivity.
Also complicit in some measures taken by Europe in recent years, starting from 2009, on the contrary, Android devices would be 80% ready for change. This is because the EU seems willing, with a vote scheduled for September, to set the cable as a single standard Usb-C (currently the most popular). However, some other standards are still at stake in addition to Lightining, for a total remaining share of 20%: in particular, the now past standard resists on some devices. Usb-A.
It is inevitable to think that for Cupertino to reconvert the iPhones to standard USB-C it would represent a considerable cost. This despite Apple is already ahead on another front and, on its iPad Pro, has already implemented USB-C. The EU has asked to provide (with the new devices) only cables, leaving users free to use the old chargers, a practice already started by Cupertino since 2020. Another request from the European Union is to make software interoperable for fast charging, making the various accessories even more interchangeable.
However, their refusal would not be a mere commercial matter, Apple says. The company founded by Steve Jobs argues that the measures represent a potential limit to thetechnological innovation, imposing constraints that limit the future vision. Not only that, it would run the risk of generating a mountain of electronic waste and irritating consumers.
The EU vision is quite different from Apple’s. The European Union is convinced that the introduction of the single charger will help reduce the volume of electronic waste (WEEE), to the benefit of the environment.
Single charger coming in 2024?
As mentioned, it seems that for the actual change we will have to wait until 2024. The reason is soon explained. Even if the green light to EU law is granted by September, likely given the outcome of a previous one resolution non-legislative on the subject (582 MEPs in favor, 40 against and 37 abstentions), the provision would probably come into force from 1 January 2022.
From here another year will have to pass, until 2023, a period granted to the Member States for the transposition of the new one legislation. An additional 12 months should be granted to companies to ensure that they comply with the changes introduced. Smoothly ending date beginning 2024.