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iPhone will get USB-C charging as Apple says it can adjust to EU regulation

White USB-C charging data cable, type C

Picture: Getty Pictures/iStockphoto

Apple has confirmed that an iPhone with a USB-C connector is coming because of the European Union’s new requirement that almost all units, together with smartphones, bought on the continent may have the usual port. 

Greg Joswiak, Apple’s SVP of promoting, instructed Wall Avenue Journal’s Joanna Stern “clearly we’ll should comply” when requested about the widespread charger directive as authorized by the EU Council earlier this week. 


Whereas Apple’s MacBooks and iPads now all have USB-C connectors, the iPhone retained Apple’s Lightning connector. Certainly, it is one of many solely smartphone available on the market that does not have already got a USB-C port.

“Now we have no selection as we do all over the world to conform to native legal guidelines however we expect the method would have been higher environmentally and higher for our prospects to not have a authorities be so prescriptive,” stated Joswiak. 

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Joswiak made the remarks on stage with Stern and Apple software program VP Craig Federighi at WSJ’s LiveTech convention.

Nevertheless, he declined to say when Apple would introduce an iPhone with USB-C.

“Effectively, once more, the Europeans are dictating the timing for European prospects,” he stated. 

With EU ministers giving the ultimate approval to the directive this week, it means the widespread USB-C charger might be required for all telephones and different smaller units bought within the EU from October 2024. 

Apple releases new iPhones round September of every yr, which means it may ship an iPhone 15 with USB-C or defer it to the iPhone 16. Alternatively, it would solely provide USB-C in Europe, or it may construct an iPhone with solely wi-fi charging for the world. Jan Stryjak, affiliate director at Counterpoint instructed ZDNet not too long ago, he reckons Apple will make iPhones globally with USB-C ports. 

When requested what was so good concerning the Lightning port, Joswiak stated Lightning was “primarily about charging”. 

“Effectively, it is a fairly good connector and over a billion folks have it already – have the cables, what they want, have audio system with it that work, have every kind of… an ecosystem that works with it. For many iPhone prospects, not all, it is primarily about charging. Lighting expenses fairly effectively,” he stated.

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Apple has opposed the concept of a typical charger for cellular units lengthy earlier than the European Fee tabled the proposal in 2021 as a strategy to cut back e-waste. It agreed with the EU’s environmental objectives for a typical USB-C, however argued it will hurt customers globally and stifle innovation. 

“I do not thoughts governments telling us what they need to accomplish, however normally we have now some fairly sensible engineers to determine the very best methods to perform them, technically,” stated Joswiak. 

Joswiak cited Apple’s battle with the EU over its 2009 push for smartphones to standardize on microUSB. However that was totally different to the EU’s widespread charger directive immediately, each technically and legally. 

On the time, 14 main cellphone manufacturers, together with Apple, signed a non-binding memorandum of understanding to standardize on microUSB. All main distributors besides Apple moved to the usual. From a technical standpoint, again then the iPhone’s 30-pin connector and its Lightning successor supported audio and video streaming, whereas micro-USB solely supported knowledge transfers and charging.  

“We might been in an argument over this one for effectively over 10 years,” stated Joswiak. “And over 10 years in the past, the push from the EU – look, they’re effectively which means, I get that they need to accomplish a superb factor – was the microUSB and standardize as microUSB. If we needed to standardize microUSB that chart would not exist,” he stated, pointing to Stern’s picture of a Lightning connector subsequent to a USB-C connector.

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