Brazil may be about to join the rush to standardise smartphone chargers. The National Telecommunications Agency (Anatel), the Brazilian telecom regulator, has proposed making USB-C chargers mandatory for all smartphones sold in the country.
Anatel has released an open public consultation for assessing the compliance of the wired charging interface with the USB type C standard in mobile cell phones.
This isn’t a new idea, of course. The European Parliament has advanced proposals for harmonising the charging interface and there have been movements in a similar direction in the US.
There are obvious reasons for this, apart from end users spending less time sorting through multiple chargers.
Firstly the USB Type-C is widely used by most global manufacturers and has internationally recognised standards.
Also, at a time when waste and expenditure are major concerns, addressing unnecessary consumer costs, mitigating e-waste and making it easier to decide on electronic devices are likely to be popular with the general public.
According to the IANS news service, in 2019, humans generated 53.6 million metric tons of e-waste. Only 17 per cent of this waste was recycled.
However, while the European Commission’s announcement of the adoption of a USB-C port as a single charger by 2024 applied to a variety of devices, including smartphones, tablets, portable speakers, and e-readers, the Brazilian proposal seems, for the moment, only to apply to smartphones.