Brussels calls for standards in consumer electronics

In the wake of Apple’s recent announcement of the iPhone 5, the Brussels based consumer standardisation group ANEC has expressed its “dismay” at Apple’s decision to market its new product with yet another new “stand-alone” piece of technology. This time Apple has chosen to release its newest smartphone with a new standard charge connector. Worse still, it is expecting loyal fans of the gadget to finance the changes made to make the phone compatible with existing devices which use a 30-pin connector.

The 30-pin connector standard has been used since the release of the iPod in 2003 and has been used with all its products. The introduction of the new “Lightning” connector will effectively make backward compatibility with existing products impossible. In view of this, Apple has announced that it will be marketing adapters priced at an estimated €19. ANEC has insisted that since the iPhone 5 does not use the same “micro-USB” connector used by other similar products, the adapter should be provided free of charge.

Stephen Russell, the group’s secretary-general has publically stated his personal position that the lack of EU law harmonisation of phone charges has been detrimental both to the environment and to consumers. He has reiterated the group’s call to the EU for a standard charger, not only for smartphones but for tablets and digital cameras as well.

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