European Union says it wants universal charger for cellphones, electronic devices

On Thursday, the European Union proposed moving to a universal charger for smartphones in order to reduce waste. 

"They want people to be able to have a single charger that works with multiple devices," says tech expert Lance Ulanoff."Right now, especially if you have a proprietary port on your device, then you need a special charger, a special cable, and that just adds to sort of landfills over time."

All smartphones sold in Europe will require USB-C chargers. Most Android phones that come with USB micro-B charging ports have already switched to the more current USB-C. While Apple's iPhone series uses their custom "lightning" connector, which according to Ulanoff is unique in the industry.

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"If the EU were to make this a rule as opposed to a proposal, it could cause Apple problems because operating in Europe--they could get fined." 

In a statement to FOX 5, Apple said it shared the EU's commitment to the environment, but added quote: "We remain concerned that strict regulation mandating just one type of connector stifles innovation rather than encouraging it, which in turn will harm consumers in Europe and around the world."

The proposed rules will also apply to tablets, cameras, headphones, and other devices, but Ulanoff doubts the change will come to the United States.

"The timetable for the EU passing this, even if it goes through all the checks and balances, is probably a year. And you know what's going to happen in the next year? we're going to have an iPhone 14. And you know what's going to happen with the iPhone 14? It's probably going to have a USB C port.

Ulanoff added that Apple could create a USB C adaptor, but will most likely opt to make the switch altogether.