USB-C The New Directive Impacting EFB Solutions USB-C The New Directive Impacting EFB Solutions

Uniting With USB-C: The New Directive Impacting EFB Solutions for Operators

November 11, 2021

A new standard is coming: USB-C charging ports. Is your fleet ready to charge the next generation of electrical devices in the cockpit?

On September 23, 2021, the European Commission shared a new proposal for unifying the charging ports of electronic devices. This would apply across the European Union (EU) for devices including mobile phones and tablets that require charging using a cable. If approved, manufactures will need to align on a single standardized charging port: USB Type-C. 

Also known as USB-C charging ports, these are the most modern option on the market. It provides high-speed charging and more power compared to other solutions, and the user-friendly symmetrical design means that the changer can be inserted into the device either way around.

USB-C Charging Port


This proposal has been created for a couple of important yet straight-forward reasons. If consumers can re-use their existing chargers, this would help to reduce e-waste. In addition, a common charger could also result in financial savings for consumers as the port would be compatible with multiple devices across different brands.

For the European Commission’s directive to become mandatory, it will need to be approved by EU member states and EU lawmakers. After this, manufacturers will have 24 months to make the changes necessary to comply with the new rules. The parliament supported new rules on a common charger in 2020, and this could be an indication that this new directive will move forward.

Although the positive impact for consumers will be felt further down the road, manufacturers are already embracing USB-C charging ports in new tablet models. As a result, we can already see how this shift is impacting the aviation industry. Many electronic flight bag (EFB) solutions, which allow pilots to use a tablet as an EFB in the cockpit during all phases of flight, are only compatible with USB-A, Lightning or USB micro-B charging ports. We have seen some operators already responding to this change. Airlines have upgraded their fleet with a USB-C EFB solution to ensure that operations continue to run smoothly. If using new tablets, airlines will need to switch to a power solution that will provide the right support: the installation of a smart converter and outlet that is powerful enough to fully charge the tablet during flight.

EFB Mount Cut Out Copy (1) EFB Mount Cut Out Copy (1)
PIVOT Mount For Your Aircraft - Other Options Are Available

Just like these device manufacturers, at Fokker Services we have also made changes to stay ahead of the curve. With our updated modification, we are ready to provide this all-important USB-C capability. Our future-proof modification includes a charger that comes with a smart converter for the power supply and USB-C outlet, which automatically selects the highest possible charging protocol the device can handle (up to 60 watts.) Not only is it suitable for USB-C, the power supply also charges other USB devices. Our easy plug and play solution includes full provisions for the installation of two USB-C outlets in the cockpit, and aircraft can be converted with limited downtime. With over 1,300 EFB implementations for aircraft such as Airbus, ATR, Boeing, Bombardier, Embraer, Fokker and more, we have the experience and expertise to take this next step.

Learn More About Our EFB USB-C Solution