It seems to be taking longer than expected for USB-C to become the standard in Germany. The federal government missed the EU deadline for implementing the charging cable directive into national law. The backgrounds.

Actually, the charging cable chaos should slowly come to an end – also in Germany. The federal government had decided to change the Radio Equipment Act, which requires most electrical devices to have a USB-C port for charging cables. The basis for this is an EU directive that should now be implemented into national law – but Germany missed the deadline.

USB-C in Germany is still a long time coming

The EU directive came into force in 2022. The member states then had until December 28, 2023 to implement the USB-C requirements into national law. However, this deadline has expired without the federal government taking the appropriate measures in time.

The draft law was introduced by the Federal Ministry of Economics at the end of October 2023. However, Parliament only received it after the last session of 2023. The Bundestag can therefore only vote on it in mid-January 2024; adoption is not possible before February or March 2024, and possibly even later.

EU wants charging standard by the end of 2024

The delay could lead to consequences from the EU. For example, the Commission has the option of initiating infringement proceedings against the Federal Republic. Because there is no doubt that Germany's behavior is disrupting the goals that have been set: the annoying cable clutter should be over by the end of 2024.

By then, USB-C will become the new standard cable for smartphones, digital cameras, headphones, tablets, portable video game consoles, keyboards, e-readers, navigation devices, headsets and portable speakers, as long as they can be charged with a cable. From 2026, the uniform charging standard will also apply to notebooks. This should eliminate tons of unnecessary electronic waste. In addition, the EU wants to achieve its environmental goals and reduce costs.

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