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Thread: Apple is resisting EU pressure for phone charger standard

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    Apple is resisting EU pressure for phone charger standard

    i-Devices maker says conformity "stifles innovation," and would "harm (EU) consumers".
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    Re: Apple is resisting EU pressure for phone charger standard

    I prefer the Apple Lightning cables tbf, at my old place the numpties were always breaking the centre pin on USB-C somehow, but with the Apple one all of the connectors are on the outside and there is no centre pin...

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    Re: Apple is resisting EU pressure for phone charger standard

    Quote Originally Posted by [GSV
    Trig;304]I prefer the Apple Lightning cables tbf, at my old place the numpties were always breaking the centre pin on USB-C somehow, but with the Apple one all of the connectors are on the outside and there is no centre pin...
    The lightning connector is one big center pin. In my household several lightning cables have broken but still no usb-c ones.

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    Re: Apple is resisting EU pressure for phone charger standard

    Apple.. lets just be honest and say what it's really all about... license fees for the lightning connector. Every device that uses the lightning connector has to pay apple a fee, seems to be about $4.

    A universal connection on all mobile phones, and other similar items, (which I actually support) would remove that extra source of revenue.

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    Re: Apple is resisting EU pressure for phone charger standard

    Cider charlatans

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    Re: Apple is resisting EU pressure for phone charger standard

    The carefully crafted invented image of Apple is probably some meaningless page like this:
    https://www.apple.com/environment/
    The reality are stories like this one. One of the world's most profitable companies lobbying against standards to make a few cents more profit. Apple are very much an anti-consumer company keen to apply as much built-in obsolescence in their products and totally opposed to re-use, repair, or reduce.

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    Re: Apple is resisting EU pressure for phone charger standard

    I think the EU needs to butt out. I don't buy Apple phones (and since they treated me like a turd, I won't be buying another laptop). One of the things that factors into my decision is interoperability. I would very much like me and the missus to be able to keep a bog standard charger around and a couple of cheap cables and be able to use them wherever on each other's devices. Apple uses a different standard and that is a big factor in my buying decision. Apple knows this and has chosen to take the anti-consumer route. It's a huge red flag for me that they go down this route and it tells me that they're going to use bespoke stuff and screw me on the price at every chance they get. If the EU interferes and mandates a standard it stops Apple doing things differently in a way that could be advantageous for their customers and it also hides this vital clue as to their attitude to consumers from people like me.

    The EU has no right at all to be interfering at this level in business. Apple might have plans in the future for this connector which could give them a huge advantage (say they're rolling out the standard and then they're going to implement a great new high speed interface when their customers are all set up with the cables, etc.... fantasy I know) and sunk loads of cash into it and the EU is telling them they can't do it because... they really don't like it.

    It's clearly all about generating extra cash from customers but if Apple wants to do that and people are willing to pay for the advantages of an Apple product, THAT IS THEIR CHOICE. I disagree with their purchasing decision but it isn't anyone's right to say to anyone else that they can't do it.

    The EU needs to keep its nose out. If companies want to increase the running costs of their products, it's up to the customer to accept or decline those costs when making their decision. It would be different if Apple had anything close to a monopoly. They do not.

    EDIT: and this idea that Apple moving connector standards is a PITA.... I have about 4 different USB standards on the mobile devices just in this room and another two or so on the other devices around. USB moves on and changes and you have to get new cables and possibly new chargers. Deal with it. One reason I won't buy one of those expandable Motorola phones is I don't trust them to not change the connector. It's the same with CPU sockets - Intel keep changing theirs where AMD doesn't and it makes AMD a better bet for some people. The EU isn't intervening there, is it?

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    Re: Apple is resisting EU pressure for phone charger standard

    I've always disliked Apple. I don't know why people keep paying top dollar for overpriced junk, especially after they've been caught slowing down older models of their products through "system updates".

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    Re: Apple is resisting EU pressure for phone charger standard

    Apple is right this time. Forcing all devices to have a single specific connector is stupid. It will mean the devices in the EU are always behind 3-4 years when a new standard connector is invented.
    They obviously didn't ask any experts and didn't think this through. Instead they could force manufacturers to ship the phones with a tiny USB-C adapter.
    Standards can work, but not if you enforce them on rapidly changing technology as a supernational government.

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    Re: Apple is resisting EU pressure for phone charger standard

    Quote Originally Posted by Nifl View Post
    Instead they could force manufacturers to ship the phones with a tiny USB-C adapter.
    I think a cable is easier to use and more robust than a solid adapter, and already easily available.

    Much though I dislike Apple products, I think I'm on Apple's side on this one. However, I don't think this is so much about connectors as it is about fast charge standards. USB-C can deliver enough power to charge a laptop, can easily handle a phone. OTOH I have had lots of Android phones with various fast charge standards. They are often just charging fast-ish on the wrong charger, not full speed.

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    Re: Apple is resisting EU pressure for phone charger standard

    Quote Originally Posted by Nifl View Post
    They obviously didn't ask any experts and didn't think this through. Instead they could force manufacturers to ship the phones with a tiny USB-C adapter.
    Standards can work, but not if you enforce them on rapidly changing technology as a supernational government.
    The MEPs and so on don't have the time to consult experts on each individual matter, they listen to their advisors. The advisors are taken out for a nice lunch by lobbyists and told what to advise the MEP. The end result is this - people who don't understand what they're interfering in being influenced by people with an underlying agenda. This happens in the national parliaments as well, but the speed at which bills are debated on and passed in the EU parliament makes them especially vulnerable to this kind of interference. On top of that, the sheer size of the market being influenced might as well make this law for the entire western world.

    What's frustrating is that most people will only see these faults with an area of interest or expertise and so they see each case as a one off, not the structural problem it represents and so people forgive quite easily.

    There's a reason Brussels has the largest concentration of lobbyists anywhere in the world.

    This happened with copyright law - the EU parliament was cheering once it was passed but on questioning afterwards by journalist, those cheering MEPs were shown to have no idea what they were voting on. Thankfully, it looks like Article 13 is not going to be adopted by the UK although I'm yet to hear about Article 11.

    Whilst the EU does a lot of very good stuff, the creeping into more and more micromanagement like this, rather than overall strategies to aid people and trade, is quite disconcerting. Setting environmental / emissions standards for cars is great, for example. Things like USB connectors on phones just makes it sound like MEPs want to be able to share chargers and are getting ticked off.

    *sits back and watches as the thread descends into a Brexit thread*

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    Re: Apple is resisting EU pressure for phone charger standard

    Can't believe how many here are taking Apple's side despite being fully aware that their reasons are 100% anti-consumer.
    Quote Originally Posted by Nifl View Post
    Standards can work, but not if you enforce them on rapidly changing technology as a supernational government.
    Well, the only problem I have this shouldn't be a EU thing but rather a UN thing.
    Yes, there are $billions of lobby dollars set against it, but really the world and the environment need far more universal standards.
    There is a very good reason why the reduce and re-use come before recycle:

    Now not everything can have universal worldwide standards but just imagine the environmental impact of just these standards of the top of my head would have:
    1. Universal laptop batteries - size and voltage specified, capacity up the manufacturer.
    2. Universal power tool batteries - as above.
    3. Universal ebike batteries - as above.
    4. Standards for car engines - size and connectors.
    5. Similar for car bonnets, bumpers, doors etc. with the connection sizes a standard the look etc left up to the manufacturer.

    And standard in these cases is mostly about a specific size or connector. So forcing the USB-C connector shouldn't really limit things in the future aside from the plug: the USB protocol already negotiates max currents, max voltages etc. so there's no reason to think that while USB-C is currently USB 3.0/3.1 etc., in the future the same plug could support USB 4.0/5.0 etc.
    The same with laptop/ebike batteries. A standard would only specify the voltage and size. What goes inside to meet this standard is the part where manufacturers could innovate on.
    Last edited by kompukare; 25-01-2020 at 06:30 PM.

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    Re: Apple is resisting EU pressure for phone charger standard

    Quote Originally Posted by philehidiot View Post
    It's clearly all about generating extra cash from customers but if Apple wants to do that and people are willing to pay for the advantages of an Apple product, THAT IS THEIR CHOICE. I disagree with their purchasing decision but it isn't anyone's right to say to anyone else that they can't do it.
    What if the world were headed for oblivion on the back of rampant capitalism and unfettered consumerism? Would that give anyone the right to advocate regulation? I know virtually nothing about gas boilers but thankfully there are regulations to stop manufacturers offering me the cheapest, inefficient, carbon spewing PoS that engineers can devise.

    Personally I am split. I concede the argument for innovation but struggle to accept manufacturers being entitled to do as they please, and hang the wider consequence. The debate, to my mind, sounds a lot like the sugar tax. Industry lobby groups spent years fighting against it - and that will cost the NHS funding tax-payer how much? A year after the regulation came into force the sales of the drinks are unaffected but the drinks themselves contain up to 50% less sugar.

    My opinion is very much swayed by the bucket of laptop charging adapters and wall warts our customers have deposited for re-cycling. Almost all work perfectly, have exactly the same electrical specifications but very slightly different connectors. The battery recycling box is even worse. 100s of battery packs, electrically all the same with slightly different pin outs and fittings, 3/4 could be repaired inexpensively were the case not welded shut. I might add our shelf of buggered bubble jet printers to the list; built so poorly they can be sold for less than an hours labour, wear out within a couple years and are nigh on impossible to recycle. Ours is one, tiny, independent IT workshop.

    It would be different if Apple had anything close to a monopoly. They do not.
    The EU have targeted the industry, not Apple specifically. The EU demand is for a standardised charging adapter and they spent 10 years waiting in vain for the industry to agree on one. Apple, in pursuing proprietary connectors and enforcing their IP with a chip in the cable, have more to lose is all. I think it is a small price for Apple to pay for the millions of devices prematurely deposited in land fill. Apple may not be personally responsible for irresponsible disposals but their branding, marketing and corporate policy clearly encourages it.

    It's the same with CPU sockets - Intel keep changing theirs where AMD doesn't and it makes AMD a better bet for some people. The EU isn't intervening there, is it?
    Nice deflection.

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    Re: Apple is resisting EU pressure for phone charger standard

    Quote Originally Posted by DanceswithUnix View Post
    They are often just charging fast-ish on the wrong charger, not full speed.
    Maybe its just me but that sounds a whole lot better than a charger that simply doesn't fit.

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    Re: Apple is resisting EU pressure for phone charger standard

    The people who are on Apples side, ask yourself. Who benefits from the EU putting this law in?

    Is it the EU, is it a specific (or small group of manufacturers) or a specific business?

    It's none of those, it's only the consumer.

    Backing Apple only benefits Apple and no one else.

    And if the standard was based around the USB-IFs push forward then the standard is intrinsically linked with a global open source standard.

    Apple doesn't lose anything except money through this legislation, USB-C is perfectly capable for all their needs for the next god knows how many years. Also including the fact that TB4/USB4 is a USB-C connector, I struggle to see anyones favouring point for Apple except for anti-EU extravaganza.

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    Re: Apple is resisting EU pressure for phone charger standard

    I'm guessing the standard would be USB-PD? So no more proprietary fast-charging mechanisms.

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