Apple has confirmed that an iPhone with a USB-C connector is coming thanks to the European Union’s new requirement that most devices, including smartphones, sold on the continent will have the standard port.
Greg Joswiak, Apple tree’s SVP of marketing, told Wall Street Journal’s Joanna Stern “obviously we’ll accept to comply” when asked virtually the common charger directive as canonical by the European union Quango earlier this week.
While Apple’s MacBooks and iPads now all have USB-C connectors, the iPhone retained Apple’s Lightning connector. Indeed, it’south one of the only smartphone on the market that doesn’t already have a USB-C port.
“We have no choice as we do around the world to comply to local laws but we retrieve the arroyo would have been better environmentally and better for our customers to non accept a government be and so prescriptive,” said Joswiak.
Apple tree’southward new iPhones will sparkle, but the magic lies in older models
Joswiak made the remarks on stage with Stern and Apple software VP Craig Federighi at WSJ’s LiveTech briefing.
Even so, he declined to say when Apple would introduce an iPhone with USB-C.
“Well, once more, the Europeans are dictating the timing for European customers,” he said.
With European union ministers giving the concluding approval to the directive this week, it means the common USB-C charger volition be required for all phones and other smaller devices sold in the EU from October 2024.
Apple releases new iPhones around September of each year, meaning it could ship an iPhone 15 with USB-C or defer it to the iPhone 16. Alternatively, it might only offering USB-C in Europe, or it could build an iPhone with but wireless charging for the world. Jan Stryjak, associate director at Counterpoint told ZDNet recently, he reckons Apple volition make iPhones globally with USB-C ports.
When asked what was so good about the Lightning port, Joswiak said Lightning was “primarily about charging”.
“Well, information technology’s a pretty good connector and over a billion people have it already – have the cables, what they need, have speakers with it that work, accept all kinds of… an ecosystem that works with it. For almost iPhone customers, not all, information technology’s primarily about charging. Lighting charges pretty well,” he said.
Best cheap 5G phone 2022: No need to pay flagship prices for quality devices
Apple tree has opposed the idea of a common charger for mobile devices long before the European Committee tabled the proposal in 2021 as a way to reduce e-waste. Information technology agreed with the EU’s environmental goals for a mutual USB-C, simply argued information technology would harm consumers globally and stifle innovation.
“I don’t mind governments telling u.s. what they want to accomplish, merely usually nosotros have some pretty smart engineers to figure out the all-time ways to accomplish them, technically,” said Joswiak.
Joswiak cited Apple tree’s fight with the European union over its 2009 push for smartphones to standardize on microUSB. But that was unlike to the Eu’due south mutual charger directive today, both technically and legally.
At the time, fourteen major phone brands, including Apple, signed a non-binding memorandum of understanding to standardize on microUSB. All major vendors except Apple moved to the standard. From a technical standpoint, back and so the iPhone’southward 30-pin connector and its Lightning successor supported audio and video streaming, whereas micro-USB only supported data transfers and charging.
“Nosotros’d been in an argument over this one for well over 10 years,” said Joswiak. “And over 10 years ago, the push from the EU – look, they’re well meaning, I get that they desire to accomplish a good thing – was the microUSB and standardize as microUSB. If nosotros had to standardize microUSB that nautical chart doesn’t exist,” he said, pointing to Stern’s image of a Lightning connector next to a USB-C connector.