If not the iPhone 15 or 16, the iPhone 17 will surely have a USB-C port on it now.
As reported by The Verge, The European Union has officially signed its USB-C legislation into law. The rules, which will now be legally binding in twenty days, will force Apple to include a USB-C port on its future iPhones. All of the EU member states have 24 months to put the new legislation into law.
That also means that Apple now has two years to bring USB-C to the iPhone. The date that the legislation will fully take effect and require all phones (not just iPhones_ to feature the charging port is December 28, 2024.
It is official ‼️#CommonCharger published in the 🇪🇺 Official Journal. The rules will enter into force before the end of the year & start to apply before the end of 2024! @alexagiussaliba @EP_SingleMarket Reminder on what this means ➡️https://t.co/LjzLs56URf https://t.co/Rh8PHTG0KCDecember 8, 2022
While we've known the general timeframe that the rule would go into effect, it wasn't until today that we've had an exact date. The EU had previously said "autumn 2024" and later "by the end of 2024." Now, we know "end of 2024" means December 28th.
Apple has confirmed it will comply with the law
While Apple had argued against the new law, it has confirmed that it will comply with it once it goes into effect. That means that the iPhone 17, which would be the first iPhone to be released after the law goes into effect, would need to make the switch from the Lightning to USB-C port.
In an interview with The Wall Street Journal's Joanna Stern, Greg “Joz” Joswiak, the company's Senior Vice President of Worldwide Marketing said that the company would be forced to comply with the law if it was to go into effect.
That said, Joswiak disagreed that such a law was a good idea, especially one that specifically prescribes which specific port a company could use on its products. The Apple executive pointed to Micro USB, which at the time, was also under consideration for such a law.
Thankfully, that never came to fruition and Apple never had really included Micro USB in its products anyway, opting for Lightning instead. However, Apple has already brought USB-C to many of its products and the iPhone is one of the last remaining to not feature the port.
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Joe Wituschek is a Contributor at iMore. With over ten years in the technology industry, one of them being at Apple, Joe now covers the company for the website. In addition to covering breaking news, Joe also writes editorials and reviews for a range of products. He fell in love with Apple products when he got an iPod nano for Christmas almost twenty years ago. Despite being considered a "heavy" user, he has always preferred the consumer-focused products like the MacBook Air, iPad mini, and iPhone 13 mini. He will fight to the death to keep a mini iPhone in the lineup. In his free time, Joe enjoys video games, movies, photography, running, and basically everything outdoors.