Germany wants phone security updates for 7 years

You want Germany’s federal government is defending strict environmental regulations for smartphones and tablets in negotiations with the European Union Commission.

The government is pressing the European Union to order seven years of security updates and spare parts for smartphones as part of the negotiations.

A spokeswoman for the Federal Ministry of Economics said spare parts and security upgrades should be available for seven years.

In addition, spare parts should be provided at a reasonable price. With these demands, the federal government bypasses the recently announced proposals of the European Union Commission.

The commission plans to make updates and spare parts mandatory for five years, while spare parts for tablets will be available for six years.

In addition, it wants to force manufacturers to publish the prices of spare parts and not increase them afterwards. But do not plan to set prices.

And when it comes to the question of how quickly spare parts can be delivered, the federal government wants to call for stricter rules.

The committee is currently planning a maximum delivery time of five working days. A spokeswoman for the Ministry of Economic Affairs said this point should be considered. Long repair time may result in customers choosing replacement rather than repair.

The federal government supports the Commission’s initiative in principle to introduce eco-design rules, an energy label and a salvageability index for smartphones and tablets.

The spokeswoman said it was right to increase the reliability and repairability of the devices. This is because appliance production is responsible for the majority of greenhouse gas emissions, and only a portion of the raw materials can be recovered when recycling.

Read also: Apple App Store faces scrutiny in Germany

Germany wants phone security updates for 7 years

The proposals face opposition from manufacturers. The DigitalEurope group (which counts Apple, Google and Samsung among its members) wants a three-year requirement of security updates and two years of functionality updates.

You also want to limit replacement parts to monitors and batteries rather than cameras, speakers, and other supposedly more reliable components.

In other words, DigitalEurope stands for the status quo. And while Apple typically offers five years of regular feature and security updates, many Android vendors stop at three or less.

Samsung committed to four years of security fixes in 2021. Some of this has been dictated by Qualcomm’s update policy. But it is clear that sometimes the brands themselves are reluctant to change.

DigitalEurope considers the minimum requirements for the service life of the batteries very ambitious. This is because very few suppliers can offer models that still have at least 80 percent capacity after 1,000 charge cycles.

So the group suggests a transitional phase that requires 800 cycles. It rejects the energy label by saying that manufacturers are trying to achieve the highest possible energy efficiency.

“We are constantly working to enable a longer service life for smartphones,” Samsung said. The average initial usage time was around 21 months in 2015, and we were able to increase it to an average of 29 months in 2020.

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