In the world of technology, it's fairly tough to get the myriad companies that make our gadgets tick work together. They've all got plenty going on within their own camp, and they all feel that their take on a given technology or approach is the ideal one. Every so often, you'll find that companies are willing to work together, as has been the case with adopting the USB standard across pretty much every laptop and phone with few exceptions. We've seen plenty of areas where standardization could benefit consumers, and laptop charging is definitely one of them
To date, there has been no concerted effort to truly create a uniform standard for laptop chargers, but that's changing. The International Electrotechnical Commission [IEC] Technical Specification 62700 is the one to pay attention to, as it would push a wide array of laptop makers to agree on a universal standard for charging.
IEC general secretary and CEO Frans Vreeswijk had this to say: "The IEC International Standards for the universal charger for mobile phones has been widely adopted by the mobile phone industry and is already starting to help reduce e-waste. A single power supply covering a wide range of notebook computers is the next step in lowering e-waste and its impact on our planet. I am proud that the IEC has yet again managed to make the best possible technical solution available."
The benefits would be numerous: supply chains would be easier to manage, and e-waste would likely go down. The new standard seeks to cover the charging plug, connector, and even the environmental considerations. It's hoping to have the charger ready for distribution next year, but as we've seen in the past, getting a meaningful amount of large companies to agree on implementing it will be easier said than done.