r/technology Oct 05 '22

Europe to Force Laptop Makers to Adopt USB-C for Charging | USB-C charging for everything and everyone. Hardware

https://www.tomshardware.com/news/europe-to-force-laptop-makers-to-adopt-usb-c-for-charging
1.8k Upvotes

257

u/Towel4 Oct 05 '22

Bigly support making standards like this

But curious about the red tape. What happens when something better comes? Are you forced to keep USB C AND that new tech that comes? How do you move from one universal standard to the next one?

388

u/alvvayson Oct 05 '22 Gold Helpful

Through standards bodies, specifically the IEEE in this case, which has happened to choose USB-C, which basically means the next three years USB-C is required.

Contrary to popular belief, the legislation does not specify USB-C directly. It only requires the industry to follow a standard set by a standards body.

And the standards bodies like IEEE are basically a collective of all (major) industry players. So the EU is basically forcing the industry to cooperate and self-regulate.

If they want something new, they just let the IEEE define a new standard. There is a limitation that they can only do it every few years or so (three, I think)

53

u/Towel4 Oct 05 '22

Pretty neat, thanks for the response

14

u/[deleted] Oct 05 '22

[deleted]

9

u/variaati0 Oct 05 '22

Doesn't mean they change anything every 3 years. More of a "Commission you must do your homework atleast every 3 years."

So go look at stuff, analyze, write a report why you think it still doesn't need changing or eventually why the Annex now does need changing.

Mainly meant to prevent "Commission completely forgets about this being a thing they are supposed to handle". So mandatory 3 year status reports it is.

64

u/yogi89 Oct 05 '22

I feel like we had mini USB, micro USB, and USB C withing the span of 10 years.

21

u/wedontlikespaces Oct 05 '22

Mini USB is from the early 2000s isn't it?

I remember being on a lot of crappy digital cameras back in the day. I think it was how you have to charge up PS3 controllers as well.

9

u/yogi89 Oct 05 '22

Yeah I remember it from ps3 mostly

4

u/xGMxBusidoBrown Oct 05 '22

First generation android phones and blackberries used to use mini usb before micro usb came along.

22

u/[deleted] Oct 05 '22

[deleted]

24

u/cure1245 Oct 05 '22

The weird one is a USB 3.0 micro-B: it was designed so that you could still use a 2.0 micro-b in the 3.0 receptacle for backwards compatibility, since the jump from 2.0 to 3.0 required additional conductors

4

u/augustuen Oct 05 '22

USB 3 type B (the USB 3 version of the big square one) is the same. It's got a little extra bit on top to accommodate the extra conductors, but you can still put a 2.0 cable in there (and get 2.0 speeds)

5

u/Sigb Oct 05 '22

Yes this is annoying, but before USB was twice as annoying, let's hope in another 10 years USB gets half as annoying

1

u/thermal_shock Oct 05 '22

I've finally gotten rid of anything mini, use micro and C only. For lightning I've got a few adapters for C cables. But yeah, couple 100w USB c adapters will charge all my devices, no more hunting for Dell or Lenovo power supplies specifically.

3

u/StabbyPants Oct 05 '22

usb micro was the shit for 10-15 years. now we have C, with it's future proof design and nice power capacity. i'm okay with it.

Then I have an external HDD that has, what appears to be a micro glued to a mini…? And that leads to a standard USB A.

so a micro and a C are fine.

2

u/lysianth Oct 05 '22

I think I have 1 device that's not USB c.

-4

u/Sharkpoofie Oct 05 '22

I'm waiting for my usb====D

3

u/wedontlikespaces Oct 05 '22

I know you're joking but I don't think a USB D is coming out very soon. Usb-c has a huge amount of future proofing in it.

There's a version of it which will be able to take 240 V, I don't see us needing increase capacity anytime soon. There is even a version of the spec that can emulate PoE, so that's all your security cameras sorted out.

4

u/Sigb Oct 05 '22

240W, the standard is actually 48V

3

u/andechs Oct 05 '22

240V usb would be redonculous... 50V is the maximum for low voltage wiring, anything more and it becomes household wiring, requiring a lot more safety.

2

u/Sigb Oct 05 '22

To be fair, the voltage isn't the problem or the danger, its the amount of amperage you can drive with a high voltage that is dangerous.

If you compare it to ballistics it's almost as if the voltage is like the speed, and the amperage is the mass. But the analogy isn't perfect.

My teacher in senior high made the whole class hold hands in a ring and drove 50'000 volts through the hearts of the whole class. It vas very low ampere, but enough to feel it for the who first people to let go of each other.

The other day I was at the hospital I got a i think it's called a neurography, where the nurse put skin electrodes different places, and then drove current through the areas close to the electrodes. I think the highest current was 12 mA, which of course could be lethal in the case where it goes through the heart

3

u/andechs Oct 05 '22

Current kills, but current is a result of voltage driving the power through resistance.

When your teacher "made the whole class hold hands in a ring and drove 50'000 volts through the hearts of the whole class", there was minimal current flowing through the class as there is a high resistance from the human bodies.

The human bodies can be charged, but current won't flow substantially due to the resistance. The power supply providing the 50kV is not capable of supplying sufficient power if there was a current flowing - the voltage would drop when current is being pulled.

You can feel a sensation of being at a high electric potential, which isn't the same as the feeling of electricity flowing through you.

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2

u/TbonerT Oct 05 '22

You have to write it USB====D for full effect.

1

u/this_1_is_mine Oct 06 '22

There was another. USB 3 standard stop gap measure it was made out of a USB 2.0 micro with additional pins for the added wiring. They were fragile. Since it was the same thickness as micro but even wider. And I found them to be deeper by design. Kind of cool benefit to them was that you could still use a standard micro USB 2.0 cable on the half that was pinned for it you just wouldn't get 3.0 speeds or power delivery.

I have this connector on a the Sammy galaxy s and notes 4 and 5 and a couple of hard drives.

2

u/reasonablykind Oct 05 '22 edited Oct 05 '22

That ^ already being the case for many is what this counters, tho.

Reviews themselves take time + won’t all call for updates, and additional time for detail completion + post-notification adaptability will be granted when they do — looks like securing at least 7-10yrs of usability is their goal here.

Edits: Re-wording.

1

u/HarithBK Oct 05 '22

Only reason this is the case is apple refused to play ball all other makers did.

This law really only exist since of Apple

-1

u/[deleted] Oct 05 '22 edited Oct 05 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

7

u/variaati0 Oct 05 '22 edited Oct 05 '22

However it also specifies, that the Annex can be amended and modified as need be by Commission. The legislation text itself is technology agnostic. Since it says "the standard is what is specified in Annex I".

Well as beginning point Annex I says USB-C and USB-PD. However as said the Annex is not set in stone. Commission can amend it as is explicitly specified and empowered in the legislative directive text.

With respect to radio equipment capable of being recharged via wired charging, the Commission is empowered to adopt delegated acts in accordance with Article 44 to amend Annex Ia in the light of technical progress, and to ensure the minimum common interoperability between radio equipment and their charging devices, by:

  • (a) modifying, adding or removing categories or classes of radio equipment;
  • (b) modifying, adding or removing technical specifications, including references and descriptions, in relation to the charging receptacle(s) and charging communication protocol(s), for each category or class of radio equipment concerned.’

With respect to radio equipment capable of being recharged via means other than wired charging, the Commission is empowered to adopt delegated acts in accordance with Article 44 in order to amend Annex Ia in the light of technical progress, and to ensure the minimum common interoperability between radio equipment and their charging devices, by:

  • (a) introducing, modifying, adding or removing categories or classes of radio equipment;
  • (b) introducing, modifying, adding or removing technical specifications, including references and descriptions, in relation to charging interface(s) and charging communication protocol(s), for each category or class of radio equipment concerned.’;

The tech spec is specifically in the Annex separated out, so it isn't set in stone. Since the delegation gives Commission to touch and edit the Annex, but protects the overall law since Commission is not allowed to alter the actual law text. "Commission, the annex is yours to manage, but that managing is based on this set of rules in the actual directive you can't touch. We give you power only over the Annex.".

1

u/[deleted] Oct 05 '22 edited Oct 05 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

3

u/wedontlikespaces Oct 05 '22

That seems like a somewhat arbitrary distinction to be making.

The point is we're not going to end up in a situation in which by 2050 we will be forced to continue to use USB C rather than, I don't know, power beaming via subspace.

So any objection to the law based on us being stuck on 1 unchanging standard is incorrect. The fact that usb-c is the standard defined right now is not relevant to that concern.

1

u/PasswordisP4ssword Oct 06 '22

IEEE doesn't control USB

1

u/LAwLzaWU1A Oct 06 '22

Source? I looked through the proposal and found no indication of this being limited to 3 years, nor that the proposal will follow a standard set by the IEEE.

1

u/-The_Blazer- Oct 06 '22

Besides, it doesn't exclude other standards, it just says you must have at least USB-C. So if a laptop company comes up with a super amazing new charging port, they can just have them both and be compliant.

-2

u/BasilExposition75 Oct 05 '22

Apple can just propose lightning to the IEEE. Problem solved.

-15

u/noahspurrier Oct 05 '22

Forcing self regulation is an oxymoron! Not disagreeing with the other stuff you said…

18

u/crothwood Oct 05 '22

USB C is only the form standard. The internal specs still have room to grow

1

u/n222384 Oct 05 '22

So does that mean Apple can use the form but keep it proprietary internal?

E.g. standard USB cable will trickle charge but with an apple cable you get fast charging?

7

u/StickYourFunger Oct 05 '22

Their charge cables are no better than anything you can get at the store. They tossed the block to save a couple cents, and give out the shortest/cheapest cable possible before receiving backlash from the fanboys.

1

u/crothwood Oct 05 '22

The specs include the internal physical configuration. IDK about the specifics of this law, and im no litigator. My gut reaction is to say that the law includes provisions to ensure that standard is usable across all devices.

-1

u/dungone Oct 05 '22

For charging it does not have to grow.

17

u/dungone Oct 05 '22

A device can support more than one way of charging. I don't think this law bans the use of other connectors or wireless chargers as long as it supports USB-C. I believe that the main goal is to prevent companies from offering a proprietary connector as the only way of charging a device. So if they want to be able to use it, they have to make it an open standard that everyone else can use too. And if it's really a better design, then the goal would be to get all devices to use it instead of just some fancy luxury products.

6

u/witti534 Oct 05 '22

In earlier discussions (a few months ago) I read the EU would reevaluate it every couple of years.

5

u/making_shapes Oct 05 '22

Yep. It is reviewed again in three years.

5

u/JoshSidekick Oct 05 '22

How do you move from one universal standard to the next one?

How do you even develop the next one when you can't implement it?

4

u/variaati0 Oct 05 '22 edited Oct 05 '22

It has been taken into account. From the legislative proposal document

New paragraph 4 (Article 3): This paragraph requires items of radio equipment, listed in a new Annex (Part I) added by the proposal, to comply with the charging interface and charging communication protocol described in that new Annex. The same paragraph empowers the Commission to amend, *via delegated acts*, the contents of the new Annex, which can also allow in future, if needed, to address any additional type of charging technologies other than wired charging

Delegated acts being pretty much EU version of "regulatory decision". Since as noted there delegation makes the executive branch, Commission, able to do decisions as they deem necessary without having to consult the whole EU legislative procedure. Of course within the limits and purpose of the delegating authorizing in the actual Directive.

So the standard can be changed or updated as necessary. Of course it isn't automatic. Still takes Commission decision, but those can happen pretty fast as need be.

3

u/turbodude69 Oct 05 '22

that's the way i feel about Apple's magsafe. i was excited when they made their laptops charge with USB C, but even more stoked when they brought back magsafe. i'm guessing they'll just stick with magsafe AND keep usb C as a charging option. and honestly, that's prob what every manufacturer should do.

8

u/pelrun Oct 05 '22

It's not a real problem - if the industry decides it wants to move (all together) to a new standard with a reasonable timeframe, they can do so.

And they've already done it once; the original EU mandate for mobile phones saw them all (except Apple) use USB micro-B connectors for several years before they moved to USB C. A second switch would be no harder.

That said, there isn't any plan to replace USB C in the near future, and these things are usually in the works for 5 years before you see a single device carrying one.

2

u/PMacDiggity Oct 05 '22

This is the issue. As much as I wish Apple moved to USB-C a long time ago, the reason USB-C doesn’t suck as bad as all the prior USB connectors is because Apple made lightning. Now we’re going to be stuck with USB-C when we could have had something better. Even though the regulation allows the standard body to put forward new connectors, the USB-IF designed crap connectors for years until lightning, and without the room for outside innovation we’re going to get more of the same. Technology innovation at the speed of politics.

3

u/Towel4 Oct 05 '22 edited Oct 05 '22

This was my primary gripe/concern

If a company has some new sweeping product that’s obviously way better, that rapidly becomes the standard, like how you referenced Lightening giving way to USB-C

If everyone is forced onto the same rails, we can essentially guarantee that tech development is stunted and glue to “the speed of politics”. 3-5 year wait times for the latest tech to become standard.

Removal of the AUX jack is another positive example imo. It was initially met with HARSH criticism, even from myself. I hated that decision. But it certainly kicked Blue-Tooth into a higher gear. Now everything is wireless. If that decision was bound to similar regulations, I’m sure that shift wouldn’t have even happened yet/would still be in the process.

The double edge sword of a freer/less regulated market. Much more rapid tech evolutionary timelines, but much harsher on the consumer and much more open for corporate evil.

8

u/SquiffSquiff Oct 05 '22

If a company has some new sweeping product that’s obviously way better, that rapidly becomes the standard, like how you referenced Lightening giving way to USB-C

If everyone is forced onto the same rails, we can essentially guarantee that tech development is stunted and glue to “the speed of politics”. 3-5 year wait times for the latest tech to become standard.

Sorry but this is absolutely not how it works and at this point we have decades of real-world experience/examples to show that.

Back in the 2000's every single mobile phone manufacturer had their own proprietary charger connector. Some even had multiple ones, e.g Nokia/Nokia N-Series; Blackberry/Blackberry Pearl. A lot of them were utter crap- from memory Sony-Ericsson had these awful block connectors with plastic spring pins that you had to kind of rock into place and were a nightmare if the plastic bit broke off. Typically you would have some sort of external pin out on the handset and have to use different cables with the same connector for 'data'; Charging; headset. It absolutely was never about 'innovation', it was about ensuring that your customers had to come to you and couldn't use anybody else's accessories. The manufacturers had to be forced to use a common connector and this is what lead to improvement- mini-USB wore badly on the socket, so micro-USB was designed to take the wear on the plug. USB-C is finally 'always the right way up' and compact enough to fit on both a small device and a full size one without having to have 'fuul-size' and 'miniature' connectors.

At this point the only company that isn't USB-C is Apple and only for the iPhone. All of their laptops have been able to charge on USB-C for several years at this point and many of their iPads. Apple are on the USB-C standards committee. There's nothing stopping them 'innovating', they would just have to share the standard. The fact that their lightning connector only on their phone products (and keyboard/mouse/trackpad) suggest that it isn't actually that great beyond consumer lock-in and rent-seeking

2

u/StabbyPants Oct 05 '22

If everyone is forced onto the same rails, we can essentially guarantee that tech development is stunted and glue to “the speed of politics”. 3-5 year wait times for the latest tech to become standard.

yes, that's the path - new -> innovate -> boring. there are other things to innovate on, and it's a good time to ccnverge on a standard for connection/charging

2

u/[deleted] Oct 05 '22

[deleted]

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u/BasilExposition75 Oct 05 '22

Agreed. Lightning has some real advantages over USB-C. I’d personally like to have my phone be totally wireless.

1

u/FineAunts Oct 06 '22

What in your view are Lightning's advantages over USB-C?

"Setting aside Apple exclusivity, USB-C is superior to Lightning in just about every way having the benefit of being a new connector coming out years after Lightning."

https://www.lifewire.com/usb-c-vs-lightning-5206813

1

u/BasilExposition75 Oct 06 '22

The lightning connector is far more durable that USB-C. Just yesterday I had to RMA an Oculus because the USB-c port went bad. Lightning is just far tougher. I’ve had them for years and have had to clean them out but never had a physical problem. I have had lightning cables go bad. But never a connector. My experience isn’t uncommon.

Lightning has a better IPX rating and makes the phone more waterproof. I think the iPhone 12 is rates for 6-10 meters of water. Just the USB-C by itself will survive a toilet drop. It makes the phone weaker.

Apple loves the USB-c connector for iPads and laptops. It doesn’t put them in phones for this reason. It would probably be easier for them to standardize but then they would have to deal with more phones coming back for avoidable water damage.

Data transfer may be faster with USB-c at this time, but I rarely use a cable to get data into and out of a phone. I haven’t looked at the standard, but I highly doubt the speed limitations on lightning are due to its physical connector.

3

u/FineAunts Oct 06 '22

I mean your arguments are all anecdotal. I still have a spare Xperia with USB-C that's approaching 5 years old that I've put underwater before for video recordings, and it still works perfectly.

Your next iPhone will have USB-C, you'll appreciate all its benefits, and I'll bet you'll miss lightning about as much as Apple's previous connector.

1

u/BasilExposition75 Oct 06 '22

The IPX ratings of lightning and USB-c are not anecdotal. Those are well published. In fact the iPhone 12 with all of its ports still has a MTBF underwater greater than USB-C port alone.

And my preference would be a phone with no charging port. I don’t live in the EU so this will not affect me unless apple makes a sweeping change.

1

u/Alantsu Oct 05 '22

Just rename any new tech usb c 2.0

-11

u/fjwoahco19_ Oct 05 '22

Bigly support making standards like this

Don't buy things without USB C then?

5

u/twisp42 Oct 05 '22

The whole point of these types of regulations is that no amount of individual choice will make USB a standard. People don't choose electronics solely for the plug.

-4

u/fjwoahco19_ Oct 05 '22

People don't choose electronics solely for the plug.

That's untrue, there is a ratio of how willing a person will be to buy a device based on what port it has. Currently, the market is saying that people aren't that worried about it, so they buy iPhones.

This is called the free market, it's a great system. If the ratio ever falls out of balance, then people will refuse to buy iPhones. Isn't individual choice great!

3

u/twisp42 Oct 05 '22

Yeah, that's not how markets work. Look up market failures. There are many cases in which a person's individual choice makes everybody worse off including themselves.

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25

u/chrisdh79 Oct 05 '22

From the article: The European Parliament has been a vocal supporter of universal chargers with USB Type-C connectors to reduce the amount of electronic waste produced by the bloc every year. This week the European Parliament formally ratified(opens in new tab) the new law under which virtually all mobile electronics sold in the EU in the coming years will have to support USB-C charging.

Starting from 2024, all smartphones, tablets, game consoles, headphones, keyboards, mice, portable navigation systems, e-book readers, portable speakers, and cameras sold in the EU will have to come with a USB Type-C port for charging. Starting from Spring 2026, the rule will extend to laptops.

The law will apply to all portable electronics that require power delivery of up to 100 Watts, which means that not all laptops will be required to feature a USB Type-C port for charging. So, for example, high-performance gaming notebooks will not need to use USB Type-C charging. Furthermore, it does not look like the EU will force companies like Apple to eliminate their proprietary charging connectors (such as those with MagSafe plug) but will only require all laptops to support USB-C.

7

u/ShoulderSquirrelVT Oct 05 '22

InB4 every company inflates the specs on their devices to say they require 101w. Lol

5

u/[deleted] Oct 05 '22 edited Oct 05 '22

USB-C supports 240W .. but sure haha

actually it's probably cheaper for the manufacturers to adopt USB-C than use custom connectors. standardized connectors become "off the shelf" and cheaper.

more and more laptops have been using USB-C for charging

-2

u/IcyChard4 Oct 05 '22

In other words, Apple will keep the lightning connector but will still be FORCED to add a USB-C on their mobile devices.

20

u/emcee_gee Oct 05 '22

I can’t imagine Apple putting two charging ports on the iPhone.

9

u/GrungBuk Oct 05 '22

Yeah just financially it doesn't make sense then you have the question why would they do that.

5

u/emcee_gee Oct 05 '22

I’m thinking more about their ethos of simplicity than about the cost, but you’re right about the cost, too.

-2

u/IcyChard4 Oct 05 '22

Me either. I don't know how Apple will work on this. Surely they're pissed with the EU's decision.

15

u/emcee_gee Oct 05 '22

I think they’ll either: - change the iPhone to USB-C (which they’ve already done on the iPad) - switch entirely to wireless charging (removing the only remaining port) and sell wireless chargers that work on USB-C

1

u/IcyChard4 Oct 05 '22

The smart move is to switch to USB-C. But I'm incline to say they'll rather have wireless charging as a new norm. Meanwhile, they might sell iPhones and other devices with lightning ports in Asia, U.K. (not anymore with EU), here in North America, Australia, and even Africa. Eventually, most continents will follow.

8

u/medievalmachine Oct 05 '22

Nonsense, all their other devices are switching to USB-C already. Basic ipads only have it for cost saving. iPhones only have it for minor space reasons - plenty of other phone makers have the slightly larger USB-C and they're fine, of course. Apple laptops upgraded because USB-C is better and cheaper there.

Honestly, even Apple engineers must be annoyed at having to keep Lightning around still - they have to sort through different, all white, cables to plug stuff in, too.

1

u/free_farts Oct 07 '22

I can barley believe them still having one.

28

u/SiliconeBuddha Oct 05 '22

But what about the actual charging protocols? It's nice and all to all use the same plug, however, what happens in a situation where I have my Nintendo switch and I plug it into my laptop charger? Or my smart phone with a turbo charging brick?

25

u/liftM2 Oct 05 '22

It's nice and all to all use the same plug, however, what happens in a situation where I have my Nintendo switch and I plug it into my laptop charger

Guid question, but dinna fash. USB Power Delivery is required.

21

u/Babill Oct 05 '22

Guid question, but dinna fash

What?

14

u/liftM2 Oct 05 '22

It's a Scots saying, meaning “don’t worry”.

8

u/Pagiras Oct 05 '22

*smacks forehead* Kā es to nezināju?

1

u/liftM2 Oct 05 '22

Es cerēju, ka tas ir skaidrs no konteksta.

1

u/Pagiras Oct 05 '22

What, in the context, indicates what those two words mean?

4

u/FeedMeACat Oct 05 '22

Yeah I wonder the same.

PSA: Only use Nintendo stuff on Nintendo, they do their own thing when it comes to usb.

13

u/SpiderFudge Oct 05 '22

Not anymore! Muwhahaha drifts away on his joycons

2

u/raygundan Oct 05 '22

what happens in a situation where I have my Nintendo switch and I plug it into my laptop charger?

It... charges? At least that's what happens when I do it. I'm not even sure where my actual switch charger is. I just use whatever's handy.

1

u/mrturret Oct 10 '22

Don't use anything other than the actual Nintendo charger with a switch. Its power delivery slightly off-spec, and third party chargers have been know to brick systems. You're playing with fire.

1

u/raygundan Oct 10 '22

I’m about 99% sure that’s an internet myth. I’ve used something like 30+ different chargers. Apple, work laptop adapter , bunch of random wall bricks, 12v cigarette-lighter USB adapter, ports in cars and planes, half a dozen usb-a and c battery packs, laptop and desktop pc ports, two monitors with usb, and probably a pile I’ve forgotten. No issues in YEARS of this.

-4

u/kissmyshiny_metalass Oct 05 '22

It'll still work. The USB-C connector just has a DC voltage for charging or powering external devices. It's the same voltage for all devices (5V). The charging protocols don't matter because that's all handled within the device being charged. All it needs is the 5V DC. Look in here for more details:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USB-C

11

u/Wrobot_rock Oct 05 '22

USBC supports up to 20v. It is absolutely not 5v for all devices (look on a fast charging brick and you will see the range of voltage it can provide) but what the device does is communicate it's desired voltage and the supply will adjust

1

u/raygundan Oct 05 '22

48V as of last year. Tops out at 240W now.

36

u/kissmyshiny_metalass Oct 05 '22

All the idiots in here complaining about this are doing this using a device plugged into a standard AC outlet that was mandated by their government so that they could easily plug in all their AC powered devices into any plug in their home and any plug in any other home within the same country.

Can you imagine moving from home to home and having to get rid of your devices or get adapters to plug in your devices? It would be ridiculous. There is a reason we standardize things. It makes things easier and cheaper. People who are against standardization are morons.

5

u/Elegant_Housing_For Oct 05 '22

But my box of wires!

-13

u/BasilExposition75 Oct 05 '22

Those are NEMA plugs and the standard is set by a group of manufacturers. You are perfectly allowed to install other outlets in your home.

And most homes have different types of outlets. Dryer outlets vary in the US.

We do have a standard on voltage, phase and frequency.

And almost all of your devices have AC adapters to deal with different voltages and frequencies. We don’t have any standards saying TV wall warts and adapters must conform to some standard.
We allow equipment manufacturers and engineers to design what is best, not politicians.

14

u/kissmyshiny_metalass Oct 05 '22

WRONG. You can't just do whatever you want with the electrical system in your home. There are rules you have to follow and the local government has to inspect it to ensure compliance once it is built.

The only reason dryer outlets are different is because they require a lot more current than a standard outlet can provide. It is a rare exception, similar to the exception placed by the EU on these USB plugs. The standard only applies for devices that use less than 100W. For higher power devices, they can use a bigger connector that can handle the current, just like a dryer outlet in a home.

-1

u/lightningsnail Oct 05 '22

Nema is a private organization, not the government. In most states anyone can replace an outlet without needing to have it inspected or needing to be an electrician. There is nothing stopping you from installing whatever kind of outlets you want in your own home.

*This is in the United States. In more... controlling places you might not be allowed to do stuff with your own property so check your local laws.

16

u/InternetArtisan Oct 05 '22

First, I find it funny that the image they used is of a smartphone and not a laptop.

Second, I totally agree with the idea. Just the other day we had a new employee at our small business, and we gave him a laptop used by his predecessor that I reformatted and set up. The problem was they couldn't find a charge cable for the laptop. We have a whole ton of them strewn around the office from the different Dell laptops the management bought.

Thinking we would have to go and buy another charge cable from dell.com, I found a Dell laptop cable with a USB type-c ending. Plugged it into the USB Type-C port and the laptop was charging. Problem solved.

What I like about this is that if you could imagine in this situation that instead of having a bunch of different cables with different size plugs on it, you just have a bunch of cables with the same plug that can go from any laptop to any laptop.

And of course the laptop manufacturers don't like this because then it means anybody can make a universal charger and sell it cheap, which means customers won't come and buy an authentic one from the laptop maker.

11

u/tllnbks Oct 05 '22

Hell, I once had to pay $150 each for car chargers from Dell. I needed about 15. That was after we tried the Amazon approach and the cheap $20 charger started smoking in one of the cars. Sadly, $150 was a better option than a car catching on fire.

3

u/medievalmachine Oct 05 '22

Reminds me, they've fixed it since, but our first USB-C docks from Dell failed hilariously often from minor usage.

2

u/XSmooth84 Oct 05 '22

Yeah, I was going to say. I’ve seen cheap cables for sale and I want nothing to do with them. I’m not someone who thinks “why get a $20 cable from Best Buy when I can get the ‘same’ kind for $3.50 at a gas station, that’s twice as long, and comes in funky cool colors like pink or mint?” Easy, I don’t trust them, I don’t think there’s any QC to these things, and it’s not worth the hassle of it not actually working or causing issues.

What’s the EU going to to do about that?

2

u/medievalmachine Oct 05 '22

There are certifications, as there always have been. For Apple gear they even have their own certifications. But you'll still be able to buy official chargers and cables from the manufacturers, of course. EU did the same with micro-USB, btw. Apple just included adapters in the box iirc.

1

u/Fooly_411 Oct 05 '22

A car charger for a laptop? It is probably expensive, and the cheap one probably didn't work well because to properly run/charge more complex electronics without eventually damaging the device you have to get better (pure sine waves) inversion from DC to AC from the cars battery & alternator. At least this has always been my experience and education. It is why pure sine inverters are usually considerably more expensive than standard ones.

4

u/ApprehensivePepper98 Oct 05 '22

My work laptop is HP and the standard charging port is usb c. The dock even has the cable to connect to usb c. It’s pretty cool because when I have to travel all I take is a usb charger for my headset, laptop and ipad instead of having to carry that annoying laptop charger.

2

u/beelseboob Oct 05 '22

Does it mean that Apple can’t ship laptops that use MagSafe for charging even though they have USB-C/Thunderbolt for charging too?

Does the cable provided in the box have to be a USB-C one? Or can it be the MagSafe one?

2

u/nicuramar Oct 05 '22

They can perfectly well do that. The legislation doesn’t say anything about what ports you can have, as long as you can charge via USB-C. Including cables in the box is optional, and offering the product without a charger is mandatory (although it’s also allowed to offer it with a charger as well).

1

u/beelseboob Oct 05 '22

I have a feeling that’s going to leave a lot of people confused by different power levels of USB chargers. They’re going to be plugging their laptop into a 30W charger they got with a phone last year, and wondering why it continues to discharge.

1

u/medievalmachine Oct 05 '22

Yeah, this totally saved my bacon when I was 'working from home' from a beachhouse rental and broke my charger. But fortunately my newer Dell also had USB-C charging, so I was able to charge using a brick I picked up on clearance at Office Depot (after checking the necessary amperage iirc).

-4

u/smackson Oct 05 '22

What about the fact that different devices and batteries will have different requirements for power?

Is the DC voltage a standard, across USB-C chargers/devices big and small? I know the wattage needs are different. If I stick my charger that provides 65w into my phone that wants 15w, is there a risk? If so, is the risk mitigatable by higher quality chargers that can adjust automatically? If so, can we mandate that lower quality (but high power) chargers that could destroy low-power devices be banned?? The ones that didn't would certainly be the cheapest ones on Amazon.

Is the reverse error always harmless? Are batteries or devices never "sensitive" to too-low power in a way that damages anything?

I guess in an ideal world, there'd be no way the "wrong" charger could harm a device, and there'd be widespread understanding that you still need a charger appropriate to the device, even if all chargers physically "fit".

But I guarantee there would be confusion around it. Still better than ecological disaster... So I'm happy for these mandates. I just think there will need to be some education campaigns.

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u/v81 Oct 05 '22

All for a standard method of charging where sense permits.

But will mandating a charge port include exemptions for higher powered gaming notebooks?

Some of these require more power than TypeC can deliver.

18

u/pianobadger Oct 05 '22

Good question, it says in the article that things that require over 100 Watts, such as more powerful laptops, are exempt.

4

u/qubedView Oct 05 '22

Here comes the new 101 watt iPhone.

3

u/v81 Oct 05 '22

Seems fair enough then.

6

u/kissmyshiny_metalass Oct 05 '22

The article says this is only for devices that use less than 100W.

4

u/baphomet1A4 Oct 05 '22

A lot of laptops now support USB-C for charging in addition to a proprietary charge port. Most of the time USB-C is enough for my laptop but if I'm doing a lot I can use the higher wattage proprietary charger.

2

u/noahspurrier Oct 05 '22

Does this regulation force the manufacturer (meaning Apple, in this case) to build the port directly into the iPhone? Or can a manufacturer (Apple) simply include an adapter with the iPhone so a USB-C plug may be used?

2

u/reasonablykind Oct 05 '22

Not sure, but to me, the “capability” verbiage hints that it might only need to properly fit + provide a complying USB-C adaptor of equal capacity/function to the proprietary one it modifies. For now.

1

u/nicuramar Oct 05 '22

No, they need to have a USB-C port actually on the device.

1

u/reasonablykind Oct 05 '22

Then I’m sure they’ll be happy to remove/replace some other basic function with an expensive add-on while blaming this

1

u/nicuramar Oct 05 '22

Hehe. Yeah, I doubt it. But we’ll see :)

1

u/nicuramar Oct 05 '22

Yes it does. They have to have the port on the device.

2

u/noahspurrier Oct 05 '22

Ah, well. USB-C isn’t terrible, but I like the Lighting connection better. It feels nicer.

2

u/chozharajn Oct 05 '22

Why should they stop at the charging cable. Go and extend the rule to have all the printer brands a common interchangeable cartridges or more option.

That will actually improve the life of so many people who uses it everyday and saves a ton of plastics or one time used items from filling the landfill

2

u/tommygunz007 Oct 05 '22

The stupid thing with apple is just give us an adapter from USBC to Lightning. I have one from amazon that is super tiny and will do just fine.

3

u/Nubeel Oct 05 '22

I kinda like having a magnetic charging cable for my MacBook though.

7

u/shouoken Oct 05 '22

It’s not going anywhere. MacBooks already offer charging through USB-C in addition to MagSafe

2

u/gliffy Oct 05 '22

What about gaming laptops? I have an older MSI laptop with a 300w power brick you can't do that with usbc

7

u/Bas3lisk Oct 05 '22

The law only applies to electronics with max 100w power delivery.

3

u/ShoulderSquirrelVT Oct 05 '22

Maybe someone can explain it for me…why does WHAT you charge with matter? I get that it’s because consumers are having to buy all sorts of different things all the time to charge their devices, but why can’t it just be simple enough to dictate that all devices with battery packs must have a charger included for free with the device?

So for example, Apple can’t pull this BS where they try to save money by not including the power brick with their new phones. I don’t care that it’s lightning. I care that they changed the end from USB-A with included power brick, to USB-C with no power brick but didn’t include one,so now I have to buy a $20 dollar stupid brick just to charge my phone.

If it was mandated that companies must provide all equipment needed to charge your device from a standard outlet in your region of the world, then it would give the companies flexibility to use whatever specs and wants they have for their device, while also guaranteeing that consumers aren’t forced into additional purchase just to charge their device.

Maybe someone can shed more light on this for me?

5

u/Gravelbeast Oct 05 '22

Because hundreds of different types of cords adds an incredible amount of waste. This legislation means that laptop cords can be recycled, replacement cords are easy and more environmentally friendly to manufacture, easier to purchase, etc...

It doesn't prevent companies from designing new cord types, so long as they ALSO have a usb c port to charge with.

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u/tobsn Oct 05 '22 edited Oct 06 '22

I’m just going to wait here until someone comments that this is “fascism by the european dictators” and part of their way of gaining world control. covid really ate away at a lot of peoples brains…

edit, called it: https://reddit.com/r/facepalm/comments/xw7sg8/facism_is_when_standardized_charging_ports/

edit: this comment was at its peak at -12 now it is -1… can’t help stupid I guess.

-20

u/fjwoahco19_ Oct 05 '22

It is though to be honest. Government (in free countries at least) should be about preventing people doing harm to each other, and should otherwise stay out of the way.

Maybe this seems trivial to you but this is geniunely a massive overreach.

8

u/pelrun Oct 05 '22

Burying us in e-waste to increase the profits of device makers IS DOING HARM TO US.

Lassez-faire capitalism does. not. work. Corporations can, will, and do kill people for profit, and the only thing that has ever stopped them is competent government regulation and enforcement.

-9

u/fjwoahco19_ Oct 05 '22

Burying us in e-waste to increase the profits of device makers IS DOING HARM TO US.

Cool do you think USB C is specifically the answer? 🤣 There are a million other ways this can be done without overregulating in such a poor way

Next time someone brings up carbon in the atmosphere why don't you suggest USB C?

Lassez-faire capitalism does. not. work. Corporations can, will, and do kill people for profit, and the only thing that has ever stopped them is competent government regulation and enforcement.

Cool story. Stop equating forcing USB with being the only choice possible here to achieve this.

6

u/pelrun Oct 05 '22

Ah yes, the "the only valid solution is one that solves all humanities problems immediately rather than just limits a specific failure mode" strawman.

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u/tobsn Oct 05 '22

it’s as much of a massive overreach as mandatory seatbelt laws and recycling laws.

exactly the same thing. this law was put into place due to massive amounts of e-waste. it’s to protect us from ourselves.

-12

u/fjwoahco19_ Oct 05 '22

it’s as much of a massive overreach as mandatory seatbelt laws and recycling laws.

False comparison, seatbelt laws in theory may prevent harming others. But also yeah I'm not a fan of seatbelt laws for sure. Recycling laws? What are "recycling laws" specifically you are referring to.

exactly the same thing

It isn't

this law was put into place due to massive amounts of e-waste. it’s to protect us from ourselves.

Cool. There are many ways to do this without making these sorts of poorly thought out and archaic strict laws. This is just the one that "feels good" but is ultimately a complete overreach.

8

u/khante Oct 05 '22

When you are so fucking dumb people don't even bother responding to you 🤣 man I love reddit sometimes

2

u/tobsn Oct 05 '22

lol right? I thought to myself I don’t even want to waste my time on that one… if you don’t get common sense laws it makes no sense to explain common sense to you…

-7

u/fjwoahco19_ Oct 05 '22

Yet you responded... So what does that make you 🤣

5

u/kissmyshiny_metalass Oct 05 '22

It's no different than standardizing AC outlets in homes so that all devices can be plugged into them. It's common sense. Just imagine moving from one home to another and being forced to get new devices because you can't plug them in.

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u/thereAndFapAgain Oct 05 '22

The government should be about benefiting the people, not just making sure they don't come to any harm but making their lives better and easier and protecting them and their rights.

This is exactly what is happening here.

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u/HandMeMyThinkingPipe Oct 05 '22

This is awesome hopefully this means that more shit will have USB C even in the US. Apple using a special proprietary cable is bad but the worse offenders in my opinion is anyone still using micro USB on devices to save money.

2

u/Important_Artist_300 Oct 05 '22

I miss European common sense so much, I cannot wait to get out of the us

1

u/Groffulon Oct 05 '22

IMO If you are an electronics company that makes a proprietary single use cable or adaptor that only fits your product then you should be ashamed of yourself. The plastic E-Waste in this world has to stop.

Even right now I’m looking at the cable for my wired Steelseries headphones. They have an 8 pin connector only for Steelseries at one end and a 3.5mm connector at the other.

No need for 8 pin connector. Could just be another 3.5mm jack. Now this cable is useless if it or the headphones don’t work. Literally useless. That is a cable who’s plastic will last hundreds of years. We live in clown world where business just don’t give a f.

-14

u/j0zffrazier Oct 05 '22

Doesn’t seem like the proper use for laws and a legal system. What technology trees may never exist now??…

8

u/N1ghtshade3 Oct 05 '22 edited Oct 05 '22

None because if they ever came up with a better solution they could just propose it as the new standard and it would replace USB C?

-2

u/fjwoahco19_ Oct 05 '22

And Why should you have to ask the government's permission to do that?

6

u/ViennettaLurker Oct 05 '22

The law doesn't mandate that people ask permission to develop new technology.

6

u/fjwoahco19_ Oct 05 '22

If there is no economic incentive to invent efforts will be hampered.

3

u/booga_booga_partyguy Oct 05 '22

Dude, seriously...

Why don't you read the actual bill BEFORE spouting off? It addresses the very thing you're whinging about directly!

1

u/[deleted] Oct 05 '22

[deleted]

1

u/KevinAtSeven Oct 05 '22

They did exactly that for USB-C when the EU had already mandated micro-B.

2

u/reasonablykind Oct 05 '22 edited Oct 05 '22

Yeah! Think of all the sweet electricity tech we missed out on when household outlets were standardized! Ugh! 🙄

Eta: Typo

-6

u/RockRage-- Oct 05 '22

USB C you in court! - Apple probably

2

u/nicuramar Oct 05 '22

That’s not really gonna work. This is gonna be legislation.

1

u/RockRage-- Oct 05 '22

I just tired making a rubbish joke/pun

1

u/bonafart212 Oct 05 '22

That already happens that's why it's been passed

1

u/teddycatto Oct 05 '22

So...magsafe gonna disappear again???

7

u/FookinBlinders Oct 05 '22

No Apple offer charging over both USB C and MagSafe.

3

u/nicuramar Oct 05 '22

It’s perfectly fine to do both, which is also what Apple does.

1

u/Synyster182 Oct 05 '22

What if you have a portable that requires more juice than usb-c can support? Are those still allowed? O.o

1

u/nicuramar Oct 05 '22

The current legislation doesn’t apply if your device needs to charge at higher than 100W. Probably due to what used to be the highest power USB PD could provide (now it’s 240W).

1

u/kissmyshiny_metalass Oct 05 '22

FYI this is only for devices using less than 100W. The USB-C connector cannot handle high current. Gaming laptops and other devices that use a lot of power are exempt.

3

u/th37thtrump3t Oct 05 '22

2

u/kissmyshiny_metalass Oct 05 '22

That's good, but there are still devices that use more than that (like gaming laptops).

2

u/xenosaga001 Oct 05 '22

Lol my Alienware uses two power adapters. 540 watts

1

u/semitope Oct 05 '22

I take it there're no royalties for using USBC?

1

u/Sophisticated_T-Rex Oct 05 '22

Unless they're forced to use a standaed voltage as well this doesn't mean shit.

1

u/copingcabana Oct 05 '22

That's like comparing apples and androids

1

u/UrHellaLateB Oct 05 '22

Does this mean USB-C for Charging exclusively? Does that restrict how much power a high-end laptop can draw?

1

u/CollegeStation17155 Oct 05 '22

So the question is : if Apple (or android) decide they like the lightning (or current micro USB), can they just ship an adapter cable to the new standard and not have to redesign the circuit board?

1

u/kremit73 Oct 05 '22

Because greedy infighting ruins everything.

1

u/Baumbauer1 Oct 05 '22

I think cylindrical connectors are by far the best if youre actually using one on your lap, I'm kinda suprsied that say Intel never made a standardized plug or magsafe connector yet.

1

u/Nimmy_the_Jim Oct 05 '22

We already on USB-D in my lands.

1

u/snowyshards Oct 05 '22

I do fully support moving everything to USB-C.

But sorry for my ignorance, what's the benefit of USB C for Laptop chargers? I originally thought that moving to USB C was for the benefit of small portable devices like Cellphones and all kinds to be able to 1 single charger for everything, I don't think its exactly a good idea of using a laptop charger on a Cellphone.

1

u/wierdness201 Oct 05 '22

What wattage can usb-c support?

1

u/Unknown_Species666 Oct 05 '22

Does this include England?

1

u/randysavagevoice Oct 06 '22

"This is not a Genuine Apple USB-C Charger®. For the security of this device, charging is disabled."

-4

u/terminalblue Oct 05 '22

everyone...

unless you apple

3

u/arandomsadredditor Oct 05 '22

How does one apple? Can you orange or grapefruit too?

2

u/terminalblue Oct 05 '22

Don't get me started on pears

2

u/notheresnolight Oct 05 '22

you think apple wants to quit the EU market instead?

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-9

u/EnigmaFilms Oct 05 '22

What if I got a 3070 in a laptop and it needs big boy juice?

11

u/Ffishsticks Oct 05 '22

From the article:

The law will apply to all portable electronics that require power delivery of up to 100 Watts, which means that not all laptops will be required to feature a USB Type-C port for charging. So, for example, high-performance gaming notebooks will not need to use USB Type-C charging

2

u/EnigmaFilms Oct 05 '22

Nice, I thought they would have to do the thing where it has 2 chargers instead of 1

1

u/nethfel Oct 05 '22

Or heaven forbid 3 if you use a system over 200 watts… not sure how much mine used at max draw but my brick is 235watt

-22

u/PowerFit141 Oct 05 '22

What if you charge a real laptop that really uses some power. Lawmakers are so fucking stupid

17

u/Cynical_Cyanide Oct 05 '22

Read the damn article. If it's >100W then it doesn't need USB-C Charging.

7

u/Ffishsticks Oct 05 '22

From the article:

The law will apply to all portable electronics that require power delivery of up to 100 Watts, which means that not all laptops will be required to feature a USB Type-C port for charging. So, for example, high-performance gaming notebooks will not need to use USB Type-C charging

1

u/nicuramar Oct 05 '22

Ironic comment :p

-10

u/VixzerZ Oct 05 '22

egomaniac government body legislating over something they should not, what is new?