USB Type-C is to become the uniform charging standard for smartphones, tablets, digital cameras and much more throughout Europe. The EU Parliament agreed on this on April 20, 2022. If an agreement is reached with the EU states, the new standard could be introduced on a mandatory basis as early as mid-2024.
USB-C standard: Lightning and USB-A facing extinction in Europe
Apple’s Lightning cable, as well as USB-A or micro-USB connectors on charging cables for electronic devices, are facing extinction, at least in Europe. On April 20, the EU Parliament agreed on USB Type-C as the uniform charging standard for smartphones, notebooks, headphones, digital cameras and more.
The Internal Market and Consumer Protection Committee (IMCO) voted on the revised “Radio Equipment Directive”. 43 votes in favor agreed on a general standard, only two members voted against.
Accordingly, all devices would have to be equipped with a USB-C port, regardless of the manufacturer. The only exception would be devices that do not have room for a Type-C port due to their compact dimensions, including smartwatches, fitness trackers or other sports equipment, explains the EU Parliament.
Together with the new charging standard, the EU Parliament thus also wants to further promote the sustainability of products in Europe and also calls for clear labeling on the packaging whether a charger is included.
Uniform standards could be implemented soon
A uniform standard is also to be found for wireless charging by 2026. Here, the European Commission is to present a strategy by the deadline that provides for a “minimum level of interoperability for all new charging solutions”.
This means that nothing more stands in the way of negotiations with the EU member states. If an agreement can be reached here, the new USB-C charging standard could be implemented in Europe as early as mid-2024.
For more than ten years the EU has been debating a uniform charging standard for electrical devices. After the proposal in September last year, however, the discussion didn’t really pick up speed until January 2022; now it could happen quickly.