What you need to know
- Apple's iPhone 12 will ship without a charging brick or Lightning EarPods.
- Except in France, where headphones remain in the box.
- That's because of a French law designed to protect young children from electromagnetic waves.
Apple's new iPhone 12 comes with some very exciting new features, but many users have been left upset by Apple's decision to remove the Lightning headphones and power brick from its iPhone 12 packaging.
However, as several people have pointed out, you'll still be able to buy an iPhone 12 will headphones in the box in one place... namely, France.
As noted by Reddit user AdamGregory1 yesterday:
If you buy a iPhone 12 in France you get lightning headphones
Sure enough, Apple's French website lists the iPhone 12's box content, and Apple's Lightning EarPods remain. As eagle-eyed commenters, and more recently MacRumors have noted, this is due to a French law which requires vendors to include a hands-free kit or headset suitable for children under the age of 14 with a mobile phone.
The new law dates back to 2015, and according to LEXplicit is driven by concerns about electromagnetic radiation. From the explainer:
While it is commonly accepted that exposure to electromagnetic waves is liable to have harmful consequences, the levels of exposure liable to alter the health of persons subjected to them are not clearly known. However, in the name of the precautionary principle on which it is based, the new law provides for the following obligations.
There follows a list of measures including the obligation for mobile phone vendors to include a headset or hands-free kit with a smartphone, as previously mentioned.
Apple has also announced it will remove the charging brick from the box of the iPhone 12, a move it says will reduce waste by 2 million tons a year, the equivalent of taking 450,000 cars off the road every year.