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Monday June 07, 2021

EC Seeks Input on Phone/Tablet Right-to-Repair

The European Commission has launched a public consultation on its plans for two related initiatives that aim to make mobile phones and tablets more energy efficient with improved material efficiency on 31 May 2021.


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EC Seeks Input on Phone/Tablet Right-to-Repair


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The initiatives fall under the New Circular Economy Action Plan and comprise two legislative proposals:

  • "Designing mobile phones and tablets to be more sustainable – ecodesign" which aims to ensure that mobile phones and tablets are designed to be energy efficient and durable, reparable, upgradable, easily maintainable, reusable and recyclable by potentially introducing mandatory requirements under the Ecodesign framework.

  • "Energy labelling of mobile phones and tablets – informing consumers about environmental impact" that aims to introduce energy labelling requirements that support ecodesign by giving consumers better information regarding product sustainability e.g. to indicate the likely battery life of mobile phones and tablets.

The Inception Impact Assessment notes these areas for possible regulatory intervention: resistance when accidentally dropped; protection from water and dust; battery accessibility and longevity; availability of software/firmware/operating system updates; product durability; ability of the product to be disassembled; availability of priority spare parts; data deletion and transfer functionalities; and provision of appropriate information for users, repairers and recyclers.


The following policy options are being considered:

  • No action (i.e. business as usual).
  • Self-regulation (if proposed by stakeholders).
  • Mandatory specific and / or generic ecodesign requirements made under the Ecodesign Directive 2009/125/EC.
  • Energy labelling according to the Energy Labelling Regulation 2017/1369.
  • Combined ecodesign requirements and energy labelling.

The consultation seeks feedback from a range of stakeholders including original equipment manufacturers, enterprises working on services or activities related to these products (such as product assembly, repair and maintenance), environmental and consumer non-governmental organisations, public authorities and users. The objective of the consultation is to collect feedback on areas for potential regulatory intervention; on users’ habits, preferences and choices related to the purchase, usage, repair and disposal of mobile phones and tablets; and on the expected effect of the potential legislative measures on users’ decisions. Feedback will be used to help the Commission assess the relevance of new regulatory measures with input for the impact assessment.


These initiatives as part of a broader agenda to introduce the so called "right-to-repair" and curb planned obsolescence across a wide range of product groups in Europe and raise complex issues around product safety, compliance and liability when something goes wrong.


Feedback closes on 23 August 2021 and is an important opportunity for stakeholders to have their say to help shape future law and policy in this area.


For more on the two initiatives and to find out how to submit feedback, see and


Dispatch from the EU is a monthly feature provided exclusively for PSL subscribers by Cooley LLP, For further information about the above, contact Rod Freeman at