What is the universal charger?, what will be the major changes in universal chargers?


What is the universal charger?

An imposed universal chargers: for which devices?


It’s official news! The European Union has voted for universal charger for the most commonly used small and medium-sized electronic devices like: “mobile phones, tablets, in-ear headphones, e-readers, headphones and earphones, digital cameras, portable video game consoles and portable speakers”.


Thus, USB Type-C will be the common charging port in Europe from autumn 2024. What about laptops? They will also have to acquire a USB Type-C port within 40 months of the entry into force of the text.


The main subjects: To protect our environment because “discarded and unused chargers represent approximately 11,000 tonnes of electronic waste per year”.


What will be the impact on universal charger for consumers ?

On the consumer side, here is the list of what will change with this new regulation:
  1. They will no longer need a different charging device and cable with each new purchase of an electronic device. Consumers will be able to choose to purchase new devices with or without a charging device.
  2. They will be able to use a single charger for all their devices: smartphones, tablets, headphones, etc.
  3. They will be able to charge their devices at the same speed with any compatible charger (because the charging speed is harmonized for devices allowing fast charging).
  4. They will have clear information about the charging characteristics of new devices so that they know if their current chargers are compatible.

These new universal charger project will lead to greater reuse of chargers and help consumers save up to €250 million per year on unnecessary charger purchases.


What will be the impact for manufacturers of electronic devices?


All manufacturers will have to equip their devices with a USB Type-C port to be able to continue selling their products in Europe in 2024. This is bad news for Apple, which will have to end its Lightning port present on its flagship products such as the iPhone or iPad, in order to meet future European requirements. This will be a major change for the American firm, used to standing out in terms of connectivity.



What are the next steps ?


In its press release, the European Parliament states: “after the summer break, the Parliament and the Council will have to formally approve the agreement before its publication in the Official Journal of the EU. It will enter into force 20 days after its publication in the Official Journal and its provisions will begin to apply after 2 years. The new rules will not apply to products placed on the market before the date of application”.

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