Apple confirms switch to USB-C… bye bye Lightning

(Pocket-lint) – Apple has officially confirmed the move to USB-C for future devices, including iPhone, AirPods and accessories.

In a fireside chat with The Wall Street Journal, as broadcast on Twitter, the company’s senior vice president of worldwide marketing, Greg Joswiak, revealed that Apple will be switching to USB-C due to the new EU guidelines but doesn’t believe it’s the right move:

“Governments do what they have to do. Obviously, we’ll have to comply. We have no choice. But we think the approach would have been better environmentally and better for our customers to not have a government be that prescriptive,” he said to presenter Joanna Stern.


In explanation, Joswiak revealed that the argument with the EU originally started over Micro USB 10 years ago and that Apple’s solution at the time was to offer USB power adapters that could accept different types of cable:

“We got to, what we thought, was a better place – which is to have power adapters with detachable cables and you choose the cable that was appropriate for your device. Whether that’s one of ours or somebody else’s.

“What that allowed you to do is have over a billion people that have [the Lightning cable] to use what they have already and not be disrupted, and cause a load of e-waste. Because what are you going to do with these cables over time – billions of them?”

However, the new EU ruling dismisses that claim and has made the use of USB-C on future devices (from 2024) mandatory.

That means the iPhone – potentially starting with the iPhone 16 – will adopt USB-C connectivity, as well as all other Apple portable devices. Its MacBooks and iPad Pro models already use the charging/data transmission standard.

Writing by Rik Henderson.

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