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EU parliament votes to mandate one standard charger for all phones

An EU plan to pressure cellphone producers to use one widespread standard charger has moved a step nearer after it was authorized by the European Parliament this week.

The European Union hopes that mandating USB-C ports on all smartphones will minimize waste, make units extra interoperable, and promote client competitors.

MEPs on the parliament’s influential Committee on Internal Market and Consumer Protection adopted the position on Wednesday by 43 votes in favour and two in opposition to, with assist from the parliament’s predominant political teams.

They additionally voted to push the European Commission to undertake a standard interoperability standard on wi-fi charging, which is more and more widespread on new units however has a number of competing applied sciences.

If enforced, as now seems possible, the widespread charger regulation would see firms like Apple made to ditch its proprietary “lightning” cable and undertake the trade standard.

The rule can be anticipated to apply to tablets, handheld video games consoles, e-readers, digital cameras, and different moveable units like laptops.

While the regulation would technically solely apply contained in the European Union, the bloc’s influential financial position means the change will possible have a world impact as firms reconfigure their merchandise to allow them to be offered within the European market.

The EU’s Council, which represents member states, already authorized the same plan for a standard charger in January this year, and the 2 establishments will now hash out precisely what the ultimate regulation seems like and when it can come into pressure.

The parliament’s 705 MEPs should additionally formally approve the committee’s plan at a full plenary session subsequent month, although that is largely a formality because the committee vote signifies robust assist from throughout the totally different political teams.

The EU’s elected legislature has been pushing for a standard charger to be adopted for round a decade, however the bloc’s lengthy legislative course of has been slow-going on the difficulty. Critics have argued that regulating the ports might stifle innovation.

Alex Agius Saliba, a socialist MEP from Malta who’s guiding the proposals by way of parliament as its rapporteur, stated: “With half a billion chargers for portable devices shipped in Europe each year, generating 11,000 to 13,000 tonnes of e-waste, a single charger for mobile phones and other small and medium electronic devices would benefit everyone.

“It will help the environment, further help the reuse of old electronics, save money, and reduce unnecessary costs and inconvenience for both businesses and consumers.

“We are proposing a truly comprehensive policy intervention, building on the commission’s proposal by calling for the interoperability of wireless charging technologies by 2026 and improving information given to consumers with dedicated labels.

“We are also expanding the proposal’s scope by adding more products, such as laptops, that will need to comply with the new rules.”

Exemptions to the rule agreed by MEPs embrace some units which might be too small to have a USB-C port, similar to good watches, well being trackers, and a few sports activities tools.

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