Will Apple have to make the AirPods battery removable?

Will the European Union take a new decision forcing Apple to review the design of some of its products? After having imposed USB-C on many electronic products, including the iPhone which should adopt it next year, the European Parliament and Council are now interested in batteries.

A provisional agreement has been reached to revise EU battery rules, with a new set of measures to increase the sustainability of products and limit their carbon footprint. One of the provisions provides that “Portable device batteries should be designed in such a way that consumers can easily remove and replace them themselves. » This provision would apply three and a half years after the entry into force of the legislation.

The battery of an AirPod Pro — Stock Photo iFixit

It’s all in the ” easily “. The text specifies that this implies that the batteries “can be easily removed and safely restored using simple, commonly used tools without damaging devices or batteries”and “Portable batteries must be able to be removed and restored by the end user. » Can we consider that the battery of the iPhone, which is replaceable by the end user but at the cost of delicate handling, falls into this category? This will no doubt be debated.

There is in any case an Apple product that will not be in the nails if this agreement ends up being approved: the AirPods. The battery of Apple’s wireless earphones is in fact not accessible either by the end user, or even by an official repairer: it is impossible to access the battery without destroying the earphones, which are therefore good to throw away. when the battery eventually fails. If the European bill on this subject, Apple would therefore be forced to review its copy.

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