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    Default Euro-nannystate to impose charger standards on mobile devices

    ...and it looks like Micro-USB is the winner. Buh bye Apple Lightning Connector.

    BBC News - Europe backs call for universal smartphone charger

    This part made me LOL.

    Apple has yet to respond to the proposals as it is one of the few manufacturers that produces gadgets with proprietary power ports. However, it was one of the original signatories of the agreement Europe reached with manufacturers to produce the chargers.
    So this is a great example of why marketshare matters. If Apple had had the marketshare, it would not be forced to conform to the Micro-USB standard now.

    The actual changes will not take affect till 2016. I wonder how Apple will handle this...will they make all iPhones Micro-USB? Or will they fragment and have two different standards for each market?
  2. #2  

    Default Re: Euro-nannystate to impose charger standards on mobile devices

    I'm sure they'll hyst do a usb to lightning/30pin adaptor.
  3. Thread Author  Thread Author    #3  
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    Default Re: Euro-nannystate to impose charger standards on mobile devices

    Quote Originally Posted by antilles76 View Post
    I'm sure they'll hyst do a usb to lightning/30pin adaptor.
    If that was all it took to comply, I don't think there would be a point to this legislation. I think they are talking about default ports on the phones themselves.

    The point of this nannystate legislation is to "reduce eWaste". And you will not be doing that if everyone is buying adapters.
  4. #4  

    Default Re: Euro-nannystate to impose charger standards on mobile devices

    Quote Originally Posted by JeffDenver View Post
    If that was all it took to comply, I don't think there would be a point to this legislation. I think they are talking about default ports on the phones themselves.

    The point of this nannystate legislation is to "reduce eWaste". And you will not be doing that if everyone is buying adapters.
    Your point is true, but I wouldn't put it past apple to try it anyway. Either that or sue.
  5. #5  
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    Default Re: Euro-nannystate to impose charger standards on mobile devices

    I belive micro USB was already standard for phones in the EU. This news extends micro USB to tablets. The availability of a micro USB to 30-pin adapter and micro USB to Lightning adaptor is Apple's workaround for the standard.
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    Default Re: Euro-nannystate to impose charger standards on mobile devices

    Quote Originally Posted by antilles76 View Post
    Your point is true, but I wouldn't put it past apple to try it anyway. Either that or sue.
    I think Apple is aware of the futility of suing. The EU will never cave on something like this. And the EU is a market Apple can't ignore or abandon.
  7. #7  
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    Default Re: Euro-nannystate to impose charger standards on mobile devices

    Quote Originally Posted by JeffDenver View Post
    I think they are talking about default ports on the phones.
    They are.
  8. #8  
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    Default Re: Euro-nannystate to impose charger standards on mobile devices

    I see no issue with requiring companies to offer a single uniform power/sync cable solution of course Apple excludes itself by offering their overprice $30 mircoUSB to Lightning adapter for free, they charge for it in the US. But honestly they should NOT allow that option. Apple should be required to do as all other companies do or those companies should be able to offer an adapter then as well. Either way too many of these cables end up in landfills or worse and its time to clean things up.
  9. #9  

    Default

    You see no problem with forcing a company to conform to your likes? If they want to sell 100 Euro chargers then let them and let supply and demand take care of them. Forcing anyone to do anything through government is done so by the threat of being caged.

    Posted via Android Central App
    Last edited by Warrenisit; 03-17-2014 at 09:26 PM.
  10. #10  

    Default Re: Euro-nannystate to impose charger standards on mobile devices

    Quote Originally Posted by Ry View Post
    I belive micro USB was already standard for phones in the EU. This news extends micro USB to tablets.
    Actually you're right. Nevertheless, Apple's policy (a new iPhone each year) certainly creates a lot of iWastes.
    The standardization of electronics is a great step with losses for companies who create proprietary ports on their devices.
    Personally I like that I have one cord that suits my smartphone, portable HDD and even old granny PSP.
    A895 likes this.
  11. #11  

    Default Re: Euro-nannystate to impose charger standards on mobile devices

    Except that USB 3.0 is a piece of crap when it comes to both engineering and design, compared to lightning, which is reversible, and just so much nicer, small, sleek and elegant.

    Anyways, the article is misleading. It is not referring to the part which plugs into your phone, but the side which plugs into your wall charger.

    Ie: a standard USB charger, which Apple doesn't meet (but to be fair, many companies don't meet that standard either), but apple can continue using their lightning cable ( for which I am eternally grateful).
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  12. #12  

    Default Re: Euro-nannystate to impose charger standards on mobile devices

    This is typical of the nonsense that the EU churns out ad infinitum... The problem no longer exists as it is only Apple that produces non-microUSB chargers. Every other manufacturer has been using micro-USB for a number of years, therefore, the "excess of chargers" problem is a problem of the passed and legislation today won't undo that!

    The only possible exception I can foresee this affecting is new manufacturers from China et. al. coming up with a unique design for their phones only.

    The EU don't need to meddle - was a law imposed to unify the fuel pump nozzle and aperture design in cars because car manufacturers were intent on designing unique fuel tank apertures in their cars?
  13. #13  

    Default Re: Euro-nannystate to impose charger standards on mobile devices

    I've seen this argument in other places, and it does make sense so here goes.

    Micro USB will only support USB 2.0, it will not support USB 3.0 as currently implemented on mobile phones. Also, Micro USB won't supply the power needed to charge a device like a 10" tablet. I'm not saying an entirely new connector is needed, but I don't think Micro USB, as it is right now, is the answer. Now, the Micro-size USB 3.0 connector INCLUDES a Micro USB segment that I THINK can be utilized on its own, for power and USB 2.0 speeds. That connector may be a bit unwieldy for phone purposes though.

    While I agree that we shouldn't have to go hunting for the correct cables to charge our devices, or buy proprietary wall-wart chargers, I'm not sure there is a good standard currently available to fit the needs of cell phones and tablets, without licensing a design from Apple (if they're even willing to do so). I like what the EU is TRYING to do but I agree with the argument that Micro USB is becoming antiquated, slow and the connector itself could be improved upon at this point.

    I also don't see the point in what the EU is doing, pretty much every phone EXCEPT Apple is using Micro USB for charging/data. Tablets are a whole other story, my Acer A500 uses a proprietary barrel plug for power but will sync to a computer using USB (Micro on the tablet end).
  14. #14  

    Default Re: Euro-nannystate to impose charger standards on mobile devices

    So, maybe a proprietary adapter should come with a tablet?
    Or why not standardize tablet's charging port?
  15. #15  

    Default Re: Euro-nannystate to impose charger standards on mobile devices

    Quote Originally Posted by abazigal View Post
    Except that USB 3.0 is a piece of crap when it comes to both engineering and design, compared to lightning, which is reversible, and just so much nicer, small, sleek and elegant.

    Anyways, the article is misleading. It is not referring to the part which plugs into your phone, but the side which plugs into your wall charger.

    Ie: a standard USB charger, which Apple doesn't meet (but to be fair, many companies don't meet that standard either), but apple can continue using their lightning cable ( for which I am eternally grateful).
    Nicer, smaller, sleeker, and elegant is not the best argument for Apple to use a proprietary charging port.

    Posted via Moto X or Droid RAZR M on the Android Central App
    JJones1210 likes this.
  16. #16  

    Default Re: Euro-nannystate to impose charger standards on mobile devices

    Quote Originally Posted by eggantom View Post
    So, maybe a proprietary adapter should come with a tablet?
    Or why not standardize tablet's charging port?
    I'm not saying standardizing charging ports for a tablet shouldn't happen, but Micro USB isn't the answer there.

    I think SOME people see the EU's move as one that's trying to standardize charging ports across ALL mobile devices. While that's not a bad idea (I hate having to remember the charger for my tablet when I go on vacation) the currently-available standard connectors won't cut it unless they license from Apple for the Lightning connector (not likely). What that means is that both phones AND tablets will need new connectors to have them both standardized, and it won't be a normal USB cable that be bought off the shelf, it will be one that could end up being expensive to buy initially (low supply, high demand).
  17. #17  

    Default Re: Euro-nannystate to impose charger standards on mobile devices

    Quote Originally Posted by hallux View Post
    I'm not saying standardizing charging ports for a tablet shouldn't happen, but Micro USB isn't the answer there.

    I think SOME people see the EU's move as one that's trying to standardize charging ports across ALL mobile devices. While that's not a bad idea (I hate having to remember the charger for my tablet when I go on vacation) the currently-available standard connectors won't cut it unless they license from Apple for the Lightning connector (not likely). What that means is that both phones AND tablets will need new connectors to have them both standardized, and it won't be a normal USB cable that be bought off the shelf, it will be one that could end up being expensive to buy initially (low supply, high demand).
    Not the answer for YOU. For 99% of smartphone, and tablet users micro USB for all their devices is nothing but good. It let's them use one charger for all their devices. Until a better solution is just as low cost as micro USB and can be force implemented into all devices in a short span of time, micro USB is the best option.

    Posted via Moto X or Droid RAZR M on the Android Central App
  18. #18  

    Angry Re: Euro-nannystate to impose charger standards on mobile devices

    Quote Originally Posted by A895 View Post
    Not the answer for YOU. For 99% of smartphone, and tablet users micro USB for all their devices is nothing but good. It let's them use one charger for all their devices. Until a better solution is just as low cost as micro USB and can be force implemented into all devices in a short span of time, micro USB is the best option.

    Posted via Moto X or Droid RAZR M on the Android Central App
    I agree that the idea of a standardised charging port is a very seductive idea.

    I disagree that the solution is micro-USB.

    For one, The EU is a bureacracy-laden entity, and one which I feel is ill-suited to manage a charging standard, especially in the mobile phone industry which advances at breakneck speed. What happens if and when USB4.0 gets invented later down the road. Does this mean that nobody can implement it with the EU's approval? Does everyone have to wait for the EU to vote and "standardise" the move to USB 4.0, then 5.0 and so on? The way I see it, it just means that everyone is stuck with the same old crappy standard. Consumers may arguably benefit in the short run from being able to charge their iPhones with cheap micro-USB cables (which I hardly see as a win), but you lose out in the long run from lack of technological improvements in this area.

    In case anyone has forgotten, Apple used the 30-pin cable for a good 10 years, while the rest of the industry flitted through a total of 18 different ports like a butterfly with ADHD, and I believe that Apple has done ample groundwork to future-proof their lightning cable to see them through the next 10 years, if not longer. Am I the only one who finds it ironic that Apple, probably the company here who comes closest to meeting the intended spirit of the law here, may stand to the be one penalised the most heavily?

    Second, it has been shown time and time again that standards-backed design tend to suck compared to what a company like Apple can put out. The most recent example is Ultraviolet compared to Apple's iTunes. Likewise, I feel micro-USB is just plain inferior to lightning. If a standard is to be had, the rest of the world should be adopting lightning (or at least, its design). Apple should not have to discard lightning for a worse alternative!

    Hopefully, should such madness ever come to pass, I would not be impacted, living in Asia.
  19. #19  

    Default Re: Euro-nannystate to impose charger standards on mobile devices

    Quote Originally Posted by abazigal View Post
    I agree that the idea of a standardised charging port is a very seductive idea.

    I disagree that the solution is micro-USB.

    For one, The EU is a bureacracy-laden entity, and one which I feel is ill-suited to manage a charging standard, especially in the mobile phone industry which advances at breakneck speed. What happens if and when USB4.0 gets invented later down the road. Does this mean that nobody can implement it with the EU's approval? Does everyone have to wait for the EU to vote and "standardise" the move to USB 4.0, then 5.0 and so on? The way I see it, it just means that everyone is stuck with the same old crappy standard. Consumers may arguably benefit in the short run from being able to charge their iPhones with cheap micro-USB cables (which I hardly see as a win), but you lose out in the long run from lack of technological improvements in this area.

    In case anyone has forgotten, Apple used the 30-pin cable for a good 10 years, while the rest of the industry flitted through a total of 18 different ports like a butterfly with ADHD, and I believe that Apple has done ample groundwork to future-proof their lightning cable to see them through the next 10 years, if not longer. Am I the only one who finds it ironic that Apple, probably the company here who comes closest to meeting the intended spirit of the law here, may stand to the be one penalised the most heavily?

    Second, it has been shown time and time again that standards-backed design tend to suck compared to what a company like Apple can put out. The most recent example is Ultraviolet compared to Apple's iTunes. Likewise, I feel micro-USB is just plain inferior to lightning. If a standard is to be had, the rest of the world should be adopting lightning (or at least, its design). Apple should not have to discard lightning for a worse alternative!

    Hopefully, should such madness ever come to pass, I would not be impacted, living in Asia.
    Seeing as how micro USB has just now become the de facto standard for charging and data connectivity, changing the standard again for something else does not help at all.

    Posted via Moto X or Droid RAZR M on the Android Central App
  20. #20  

    Default Re: Euro-nannystate to impose charger standards on mobile devices

    Quote Originally Posted by A895 View Post
    Seeing as how micro USB has just now become the de facto standard for charging and data connectivity, changing the standard again for something else does not help at all.

    Posted via Moto X or Droid RAZR M on the Android Central App
    Which is why I feel that before any body decides to settle on a single standard, everyone needs to first sit down, think this through properly, then come up with a cable which they are sure can at least meet the needs of the industry for the next 10 years. Then make everyone adopt that standard. Rather than just settling for whatever the standard currently is (and it's not even a great standard to begin with), especially when you know that it will probably be obsoleted in a couple of years (heck, I would argue that lightning already trumps micro-USB in terms of design and engineering).

    Apple managed to do that with their 30-pin connector. They appear to be doing the same thing with their lightning cables, which even come with their own ram and processor (which could, in theory, allow Apple to patch their cables via their iOS devices to support any standard that appear in the future). This is foresight, and more importantly, this shows that it can be done, just that no one else is doing it, probably because it is simply cheaper and easier to just go with whatever the industry standard is at the time (or fork them if necessary) than invest money and resources into actually properly designing one of their own.

    IMO, this is a classic example of the cure being worse than the disease.
  21. #21  

    Default Re: Euro-nannystate to impose charger standards on mobile devices

    Quote Originally Posted by abazigal View Post
    Am I the only one who finds it ironic that Apple, probably the company here who comes closest to meeting the intended spirit of the law here, may stand to the be one penalised the most heavily?
    Isn't the Lighting connector proprietary? That's the opposite of standard. They'd have to make it standard for it to be anywhere close to the spirit of the law (everyone using the same connector).

    Also,

    Quote Originally Posted by abazigal
    Anyways, the article is misleading. It is not referring to the part which plugs into your phone, but the side which plugs into your wall charger.
    That's not true. They're clearly talking about the connector that plugs into the phone. Changing the USB A connector to a micro USB connector wouldn't make any sense. That would require pretty much all chargers to be replaced (the opposite of what they want) and wouldn't fix the issue of all the different cables being required to charge different devices.

    I understand what the EU is getting at, but I'm not sure they're going to get there this way. I agree it will cause more problems than it will solve.
  22. #22  

    Default Re: Euro-nannystate to impose charger standards on mobile devices

    Quote Originally Posted by abazigal View Post
    Which is why I feel that before any body decides to settle on a single standard, everyone needs to first sit down, think this through properly, then come up with a cable which they are sure can at least meet the needs of the industry for the next 10 years. Then make everyone adopt that standard. Rather than just settling for whatever the standard currently is (and it's not even a great standard to begin with), especially when you know that it will probably be obsoleted in a couple of years (heck, I would argue that lightning already trumps micro-USB in terms of design and engineering).

    Apple managed to do that with their 30-pin connector. They appear to be doing the same thing with their lightning cables, which even come with their own ram and processor (which could, in theory, allow Apple to patch their cables via their iOS devices to support any standard that appear in the future). This is foresight, and more importantly, this shows that it can be done, just that no one else is doing it, probably because it is simply cheaper and easier to just go with whatever the industry standard is at the time (or fork them if necessary) than invest money and resources into actually properly designing one of their own.

    IMO, this is a classic example of the cure being worse than the disease.
    If the market does not demand it now and does not need it, it makes sense to change it? Micro USB is a wide standard and everyone can support but special proprietary ports like lightning hurt more than help. Remember the hoopla when Apple changed it from 30 pin? When a standard is in use for a while a large variety of options in accessories and support open up, but to use something that might have a license fee would be crazy. Prices might increase in accessories, we might see an increase in devices because of the possible license needed to use such a proprietary port.

    Posted via Moto X or Droid RAZR M on the Android Central App
  23. #23  

    Default Re: Euro-nannystate to impose charger standards on mobile devices

    Quote Originally Posted by garublador View Post
    Isn't the Lighting connector proprietary? That's the opposite of standard. They'd have to make it standard for it to be anywhere close to the spirit of the law (everyone using the same connector).

    That's not true. They're clearly talking about the connector that plugs into the phone. Changing the USB A connector to a micro USB connector wouldn't make any sense. That would require pretty much all chargers to be replaced (the opposite of what they want) and wouldn't fix the issue of all the different cables being required to charge different devices.

    I understand what the EU is getting at, but I'm not sure they're going to get there this way. I agree it will cause more problems than it will solve.
    It confused me for a while over at Ars Technica, where I am also following a similar thread.

    If you ask me, now that I think about it, standardising the micro-USB part which plugs into the device makes no sense, especially when you consider that companies like Samsung are forced to modify the micro-USB port precisely because it could not charge their tablets quickly enough.

    I am not tech-savvy enough to fully follow the conversation, but this is what I can gather. They are referring more to standardising the wall charger. Do correct me if I am wrong though.

    EU votes in favor of universal mobile charger | Ars Technica
  24. #24  

    Default Re: Euro-nannystate to impose charger standards on mobile devices

    Quote Originally Posted by A895 View Post
    If the market does not demand it now and does not need it, it makes sense to change it? Micro USB is a wide standard and everyone can support but special proprietary ports like lightning hurt more than help. Remember the hoopla when Apple changed it from 30 pin? When a standard is in use for a while a large variety of options in accessories and support open up, but to use something that might have a license fee would be crazy. Prices might increase in accessories, we might see an increase in devices because of the possible license needed to use such a proprietary port.

    Posted via Moto X or Droid RAZR M on the Android Central App
    People making noise about the migration of 30-pin to lightning is precisely why in these situations, I am glad that Apple has a reputation for ramming through whatever they believe is right, even if people may make a lot of noise now, because I think that hindsight will show that Apple has done the right thing. They did an admirable job in making the 30-pin cable last as long as it did, and now, it is time to move on and see how best to tackle the next 10 years (i.e.: lightning).

    That's the problem - people only looking and caring about the here and now, without considering if micro-USB can continue to meet their needs in the future, and even so, for how long? I am not saying that the industry necessarily has to license lightning, but if they are going to adopt something like USB3.1 (which is at least reversible), can the committee responsible for developing it also take the time and care to future-proof it as well?
  25. #25  

    Default Re: Euro-nannystate to impose charger standards on mobile devices

    Quote Originally Posted by abazigal View Post
    It confused me for a while over at Ars Technica, where I am also following a similar thread.
    Then why is Apple being singled out? No one uses a micro-USB connector on the wall side of the cable. They all use a standards A type USB connector. It doesn't make any sense to use a micro USB-OTG connector on that side (which you'd need if you used a micro USB connector) because it will never be a device. The whole point is to reduce waste, not generate more by making all current chargers non compliant.
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