The Brazilian government has had enough of Apple’s shenanigans.
A Tuesday press release(opens in a new tab) by the country’s Ministry of Justice and Public Security announced that it would suspend the sales of iPhones that don’t come bundled with a charger of any kind, something Apple made standard practice in 2020 citing environmental concerns. Brazil is also fining Apple the equivalent of $2.3 million USD for making people either buy new Lightning cables or keep them around, after the rest of the tech world shifted to USB-C as its universal charging standard.
Reuters(opens in a new tab) reported that Apple intends to appeal the decision. Apple says that shipping iPhones without charging bricks is better for the environment, but Brazil insists it’s bad for consumers regardless. One way for Apple to get around this, per Brazil’s press release, would be to adopt USB-C as a charging standard for iPhones.
Brazil isn’t the first region to try to force Apple to adopt the same charging standard as everyone else. The European Union’s parliament recently agreed on a proposal that would mandate USB-C ports on all small and mid-sized electronic devices, which would obviously include iPhones. Apple has thus far avoided the switch, but that may not last much longer.
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Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo said earlier this year he expects Apple to adopt USB-C for iPhones in 2023, on what would theoretically be called the iPhone 15. Just days later, Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman reported that Apple had been internally testing USB-C iPhones, so this seems like a “where there’s smoke, there’s fire” situation.
With Apple set to announce the (probably Lightning-enabled) iPhone 14 in just a few hours, let’s all hope this is the last year we collectively have to keep a Lightning cable around.