India’s Mobile Industry Agrees to a Phased Rollout of Universal Device Chargers

The board decided to use USB Type-C as the standard for charging ports for laptops, smartphones, tablets, and other devices.

The Consumer Affairs Ministry said on Wednesday(16 November 2022) that smartphone manufacturers and industry associations have agreed to a gradual implementation of a standard charging connector for all electronic devices.

It was announced that a sub-group will be formed to look at the viability of standard charging connectors for wearables.

This was resolved following a debate at the interministerial task force meeting held here, which was presided over by Consumer Affairs Secretary Rohit Kumar Singh.

Attending the meeting were officials from business organisations like MAIT, FICCI, and CII, educational institutions like IIT Kanpur and IIT (BHU), as well as central government agencies like the Environment Ministry.

In order for the common charging port to be implemented by the industry and embraced by consumers in harmony, stakeholders “agreed that a phased roll-out of the common charging port may be done,” according to an official statement.

During the discussion, there was a wide agreement among the participants that USB Type-C should be used as a charging connector for electronic devices such laptops, tablets, and smartphones. Additionally, it was discussed whether a different charging connector should be used for feature phones, it said.

In the meeting, the secretary stated that “industry should overcome resistance in adopting a uniform charging port in the sake of customer welfare and reduction of needless e-waste.”

The declaration said that it was also believed the Environment Ministry might conduct an impact analysis to assess and look at the potential impact of standard charging ports on digital devices with reference to e-waste.

The standardisation of charging ports is a step in the direction of the LiFE (Lifestyle for Environment) mission, which calls for “aware and deliberate utilisation” by people all over the world as opposed to “aware and wasteful consumption.” Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched the mission at COP-26.

The LiFE mission seeks to establish and support a global network of “Pro-Planet People” (P3) who may share a commitment to pursuing and promoting ecologically happy life.

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