An upcoming EU regulation will require the storage of hardware spare parts for smartphones and tablets for at least five years after they are removed from the market.
“This initiative … aims to ensure that mobile phones and tablets are designed to be energy efficient and durable, that consumers can easily repair, upgrade and maintain them, [and] that it is possible to reuse and recycling of devices", he describes a draft of the regulation.
The European Commission has published this draft publicly and is seeking feedback from the public and stakeholders over a four-week period.
According to the draft, the regulation is due to the "surge in demand for smartphones and tablets" which "has led to an increased demand for energy and materials needed to manufacture these devices in the EU market, which is accompanied by an increase in the associated environmental impacts .
The EU also states that these devices "are often replaced prematurely by users and at the end of their useful life, are not reused or recycled sufficiently, leading to a waste of resources".
It thus seeks to prevent the premature retirement of devices and improve the repairability of key components such as batteries and screens, as well as their future recyclability.