European Union to impose universal phone charger for smartphones

·2-min read
Representative image
Representative image

Brussels [Belgium], September 23 (ANI): The European Union on Thursday said it will impose a universal charger for smartphones, in a bid to cut back on electronic waste.

The commission proposed a harmonised charging port for electronic devices to allow consumers to charge their devices with the same USB charger, regardless of the device brand.

"Today, the Commission takes an important step against e-waste and consumer inconvenience, caused by the prevalence of different, incompatible chargers for electronic devices. Years of working with industry on a voluntary approach already brought down the number of mobile phone chargers from 30 to 3 within the last decade, but could not deliver a complete solution," EU said in a statement.

"With today's proposal for a revised Radio Equipment Directive, the charging port and fast charging technology will be harmonised: USB-C will become the standard port for all smartphones, tablets, cameras, headphones, portable speakers and handheld videogame consoles," the statement added.

The Commission is now putting forward legislation to establish a common charging solution for all relevant devices, it added.

The revision of the Radio Equipment Directive is part of the Commission's broader action to address the sustainability of products, in particular electronics on the EU market, which will be the focus of a forthcoming proposal on sustainable products.

In 2020, approximately 420 million mobile phones and other portable electronic devices were sold in the EU. On an average, consumers own around three mobile phone chargers, of which they use two on a regular basis.

Despite this, 38 per cent of consumers report having experienced problems at least once that they could not charge their mobile phone because available chargers were incompatible. The situation is not only inconvenient but also costly for consumers, who spend approximately EUR2.4 billion annually on standalone chargers that do not come with electronic devices, the statement said.

In addition, disposed of and unused chargers are estimated to pile up to 11,000 tonnes of e-waste every year, it added. (ANI)

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