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Apple Joins Universal Charger Standard

Gordon Kelly


Apple Joins Universal Charger Standard

So Apple is going to play ball, kinda...

In a hugely surprisingly move the Cupertino giant has announced it will support the long heralded universal phone charger standard. Micro USB is the format chosen and it is hoped the move will cut down on unnecessary charging cables and environmental waste.

Naturally, however, Apple isn't exactly reading the script the same way as everyone else.

Unlike existing partners Nokia, Samsung, LG, Motorola, Sony Ericsson, RIM, NEC, Qualcomm and Texas Instruments, Apple has said it has no intention of dropping its own standard. Instead Apple entertains the idea of bundling a micro USB adaptor with its iPhones since it has no intention of dropping the dock connector which has proved fundamental to the success of its 'Made for' peripherals programme.

Of course adding an additional bit of plastic in the form of an adaptor is hardly in keeping with the environmental benefits the GSMA had hoped would arrive from a universal charger standard. On the other hand it may give Apple the excuse to remove the charger altogether and simply pack an adaptor. We'll simply have to wait and see.

In related news Apple spokesperson Steve Dowling has officially confirmed what everyone already knew: "Steve is back to work," he explained and he will be part time initially. "We are very glad to have him back," he added.


http://www.gsmworld.com/index.htm GSMA

Jobs Return via Bloomberg


June 30, 2009, 11:38 am

As an "environmental benefit" Apple dropped the charger from its iPod line a couple of years ago, so it wouldn't be too much of a surprise were they to drop it from the iPhone. Great, I spend £1000 on a phone and a contract and I don't even get a wall plug!


June 30, 2009, 11:40 am

So it seems ipod/phone owners will have to pack with them an adaptor instead of a cable when staying over at a friends. So much for that legendary ease of use.


June 30, 2009, 1:56 pm

Surely this is only a brief stop-gap anyway.

Third party manufacturers are already creating 'wireless charging pads', the only problem being that they're also having to create adaptors for popular mobile devices to allow them to charge wirelessly via the pad. It's a much more efficient method, eschewing the charging cable all together.


June 30, 2009, 3:37 pm

wireless charging would be awesome... lets wait till next year to speculate what features we expect the next iphone to have, and watch it release with nothing like this.


June 30, 2009, 5:52 pm

Apple could use an adaptor at first and then simply fit an a Micro-USB port to the next gen devices in addition to the normal interface. That way it could keeps its existing interface, the loss of which would hack off a LOT of people.


July 1, 2009, 3:47 am

the universal standard is a brilliant idea. blue ray vs hd dvd, beta vs vhs, usb vs firewire, apple charger vs micro usb. its all a waste of time. the only reason why apple cant join the universal standard is because it has forced much of the phone and audio market into adopting its own 'unique' technologies. Apple create amazing devices but they are very monopolistic and agressive on the quiet.

gareth edwards

July 1, 2009, 3:18 pm

Apple aside it's about time this happened. I mean, look at all the big mobile boys and the various phone chargers. I think over the years I've had in excess of 15 mobile phones and they all had differing charging pins. From Nokias with the single pin to the SE phones with the shittest plastic thing that always snapped (went through 3 of their chargers!!) to the last Sammy I had that used slim usb (very flimsy).

As for Apple joining, I heard that they were part of a different group and that they were always on-board with the universal charger - it's just now people are making a hoo-har about it. Also they said that they would continue to use their proprietary connector which, if you take into account how many peripherals use it (including a new rage if TVs coming out from JVC?) it would be insane to drop it. It simply becomes an additional connection that apple can use so it's no real issue unless you want to make it one.

The real saving comes from the mass market (cheap) phones, of which there are probably billions on the planet, all having a single charging solution that is optional when you buy the unit. And there's the real clincher - the charger becomes OPTIONAL at the point of purchase.

As an interesting aside I actually have 8 mobile hone chargers in my house that i do not use. 8! And ironically the iPhone I have I don't use a wall charger, I just hook it up to my mac every day while and at my desk.

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