Home Technology US senators want to ban own chargers

US senators want to ban own chargers

USB-C charging plug selection

Robert Triggs / Android Authority

TL;DR

  • Three US senators have officially asked the US government to curb the use of proprietary chargers by businesses.
  • The request is very similar to the EU law just passed requiring USB-C ports for all tech products.
  • If the US follows the EU down this path, Apple would be the company most affected.

Three United States senators — Edward J. Markey, Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders, all Democrats — have sent a formal request to Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo. In the letter, the senators are calling on the US to adopt a policy that is very similar to one the European Union has recently adopted.

The letter (which you can see here, via The edge) demands that the US do something about proprietary chargers. Markey, Warren and Sanders argue that the tech industry has failed to “establish uniform standards for charging accessories.” This failure is “expensive and frustrating for consumers and fuels the spread of electronic waste.”

Also see: It’s not the USB-C port, it’s what you do with it that counts

Recently, the EU passed a comprehensive law that will force all companies to charge all mobile products via USB-C by 2024. This letter from the US senators is clearly inspired by that – the senators even directly mention EU law.

However, the letter does not push as hard as EU law. For example, the three senators say nothing about USB-C. Instead, they just ask the Secretary of Commerce to force the tech industry to do something about the e-waste problem.

The senators also do not mention Apple in the letter. However, Apple would be the company most affected by legislation against proprietary chargers. The Lightning standard is still making an appearance on iPhones, despite most other products moving to USB-C.

Of course, it’s unlikely that Apple would swap Lightning for USB-C for European products only. EU law is likely to force Apple to exchange all products everywhere. In any case, this US proposal is still a step in the right direction.

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