The European Union has been pushing for a universal cell phone charger for years, and on Thursday it took another step forward in this process.
The European Parliament's internal market and consumer protection committee unanimously voted on a legislative resolution to create a law requiring all companies to make the same type of charger. One of the reasons for this resolution is to cut down on e-waste.
Even though there's a rough agreement between companies to supply users with Micro-USB connectors, it's not mandatory. This is why Apple can still create items like the 30-pin and Lightning connectors and not come under fire from European politicians. This is also the reason why Apple's 30-pin to Micro-USB cable adapters are only available in Europe. However, the Lightning to Micro-USB cable adapters are available worldwide.
Despite the authoritative nature of the resolution, it's likely big changes won't happen anytime soon. The committee still has to take its proposal to the Council, which will bring it before Parliament, and then it needs a number of votes to pass.
Corrected at 6:55 p.m. PT to say that Apple's Lightning to Micro-USB cable adapters are available worldwide.