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Why Do You Need Different Power Plug Adapters Around The World?

  • source:yuadon
  • Date:07/23/2019

Frequent travelers and those people that have never left their country have one universal understanding, which is: there are different power plugs all around the world. For example if somewhere were to travel to Australia, there where to need an Aus plug adapter, and this would happen for most countries.


But why is this the way things are? This dates back to when electricity was first introduced into homes. As things kept evolving, electricity started becoming an important part of that environment, as it replaced fire as a form of heating, as well this importance grew with the invention of appliances, like clothes iron.


So because it was necessary connections to them, something besides a light socket was needed. That´s why in 1920s, the two-prong electric plug was introduced.


At around that time, some electricity companies started charging a split tariff system, which consisted on the electricity for lighting being lower than that for other purposes. This led the way for low wattage appliances, like vacuum cleaners, to being connected to the light fitting.


But this wasn´t really safe, so as the need for safer grew, three-pin outlets arrived. This type of pin was an earth pin, which as the name suggests it was connected to the earth. Nonetheless it had the equal potential as the neutral supply line. The idea behind this invention, was that if a short circuit were to happen to earth, a fuse would blow, which would disconnect the supply.


That was a little information of how plugs came to be. But the reason why there are various models all over the world, is because most countries desired to create a plug of their own, instead of adopting the US standard.


There are over 15 different styles of plugs, some of them being: EU power plug adapter and US plug adapter. And in comparison to the American plugs all the others are more advanced in terms of designs and safety.


But this has being an ongoing goal to be changed by the International Electro technical Commission (IEC). This has been hard to accomplish because of different political and economic problems all over the world.


But this changed when finally in 1986, the IEC presented the universal standard plug, also known as type N. The first country to adopt it, was Brazil in 2007, it was used as standard wall outlet and plug top. This movement was made because they wanted to unify the type of plug that was used in the country, because they had an array of different ones across the entire country.


In the same situation, there are various Latin-American, African and Asian countries. So really the need to standardize to a unique plug system is obvious. It´s necessary for the comfort of the people living in the place and is also convenient for travelers as they would not need to buy different travelers adaptors. 

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