Citing the alarming growth of e-waste, a European Union committee has unanimously voted to require all smartphone, and probably tablets as well, manufacturers to use the same type of charger. While many such European companies have already adopted a common charger interface, this could potentially pose problems for Apple who has consistently been using its own proprietary connections.
As part of its efforts to have a universal charger, the internal market and consumer protection committee of the European Union voted to introduce legislation that would require companies to use a single system for all their devices. In practice, however, companies have already been using micro USB connectors ever since it was chosen as the region’s official standard in 2010 by the European Union. This resolution, then, would only serve to make the practice legally binding, which should not pose much of a problem with most companies.
The same cannot be said, however, for Apple. The Cupertino-based creator of iPhones and iPads have been using its own 30-pin and Lightning connectors, which, as many already know, do not work with any other device other than Apple’s products. Although Lightning to micro USB and 30-pin to micro USB adapaters exist, with the latter only available in Europe, this new mandate might force Apple at the very least, to include such adapters right out of the box.
That said, the resolution isn’t final, as it still has to go through a long parliamentary procedure that will take the committee decision to the council, then to the Parliament, and then finally to voting. That should give Apple enough time to get its business in order or to offer its objections on the matter.