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News Link • European Union

EU says all mobile devices must use the same charger by 2016

•, Michael Trei
The Radio Equipment Directive establishes several new laws for portable devices, but most importantly, it states that all mobile devices must work with a standard design of charger, allowing any charger to connect to any device regardless of brand. The proposed standard charger uses the Micro USB connector already familiar to Nokia and Samsung users, while giving the big middle finger to Apple's recently introduced Lightning connector.
Most of us have been in that situation where our phone's battery was running on fumes, and you had to ask around begging for a few minutes of charge time from someone who has that same brand of device. Once the chargers are universal, everybody's charger will work with every phone, so this will become a problem of the past. A universal charger port will also make if much easier to offer public charging stations everywhere from taxis and airplanes, to waiting rooms and rental cars. The directive also points out that by not having to toss out the charger every time you get a new phone, e-waste could be reduced by an estimated 51,000 tons per year. Your old charger would still work with your new phone, so they could be sold without a charger, saving money for those of us who don't feel the need more chargers cluttering up our lives.

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