India May Have to Wait Longer Before Mandating USB-C as Standard Charging Port

Smartphone brands are ready to shift to USB-C, but are demanding for extra time to make the complete shift

Highlights
  • Apple has asked for a deadline of June 2026 to shift to USB-C for older model iPhones.
  • Samsung, Xiaomi,, Vivo, and others are ready to comply with the USB-C mandate by June 2025.
  • The Government of India is yet to decide the deadline, which would delay the adoption of USB-C as the standard charging port in the country.
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The Government of India is looking to enforce a standard charging port for all electronic devices, similar to the European Union’s mandate for USB-C. However, the GoI is yet to set a deadline for the same due to complaints from manufacturers in adopting the new rule.

India is one of the biggest manufacturing hubs for smartphone OEMs, including Apple, Samsung, Xiaomi, and many others. Hence, smartphone brands are demanding more time to make the complete shift towards USB-C, as huge changes will have to be done in the manufacturing lines. This also means that India may have to wait a little longer before mandating USB-C.

Apple and Samsung Demand More Time to Shift to USB-C

The Indian Government previously shared its plans to enforce USB-C as the standard charging port for all devices such as smartphones, tablets, computers, etc. However, it also included that existing devices shall also shift to USB-C if they are using any other different port.

While Apple is ready to shift to USB-C, the company said that the change is not possible on its existing devices. Furthermore, Apple demanded a time of EU+6 months to adapt to the change. For reference, the EU has set a deadline of 28 December 2024 for all brands to shift to USB-C as the standard port.

However, there’s a big catch in Apple’s demand. The company says that these suggested deadlines are only for upcoming devices. If the government wants to mandate the shift for existing devices as well such as the iPhone 13 and iPhone 14, Apple has asked for a deadline of EU+18 months.

Other brands such as Samsung, Xiaomi, Vivo, and others have also cited that an EU+6 month timeline would be more feasible to implement. Multiple representatives from these brands have stated that if the deadline for December 2024 is not met, an extension of 6 months should be considered.

Speaking on this topic, the Electronics Minister of India, Rajeev Chandrasekhar said to the Economic Times that the government is considering all the factors in the situation. The deadline for the USB-C mandate is yet to be made, and the matter is still under deliberation.

India’s Sudden Shift to USB-C Could Hurt Exports

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As per ET’s report, India’s smartphone exports may get hurt due to the sudden shift to USB-C, especially Apple. This is because Apple manufactures the older iPhone 12, 13, and 14 in India which are exported to the Middle East, Africa and other regions.

If India mandates USB-C by December 2024, then it will be very difficult for Apple to manufacture two different variants of the same iPhone, as the company will have to make USB-C iPhones for India, while offering lightning ports in external markets as per local needs.

India exports iPhones worth $5 billion, which is expected to grow even further in upcoming months. If USB-C change gets mandated for existing devices as well, it will not just hurt Apple but also India’s exports, mentions ET. Hence, Apple is demanding extra time to shift to USB-C on older models, while complying with the normal deadline for upcoming devices.