According to a recent tweet by Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo and Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman, Apple is Testing iPhones With USB-C Ports.
Until last week, a USB-C iPhone was a myth. Recall that Apple told the EU in 2020 that forcing the company to move to USB-C connectors on iPhones would result in “an unprecedented volume of electronic garbage” and “greatly inconvenience consumers.” In September of last year, the company then claimed that requiring a specific type of connector would impede innovation rather than encourage it. Yet last week, two prolific insiders, Ming-Chi Kuo and Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman, revealed that the company is working on (or at least testing) a USB-C version of the iPhone that could debut in 2023 following the iPhone 14.
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Furthermore, the publication claims that Apple is working on an adaptor that will allow future iPhones with USB-C to function with current Lightning connector accessories. However, it’s unclear whether Apple will include it in the retail box or sell it separately. Given Apple’s reputation, customers will almost certainly have to pay extra for the adaptor.
The current Lightning connector is used by various third-party devices, including chargers, auto adapters, and external microphones. Third-party providers would be forced to redesign their goods due to the changeover. However, a move would reduce Apple’s monopoly on the iPhone accessory industry.
The reason for the move is the European Union’s decision to require phone manufacturers to use USB-C connectors. A majority vote in April approved legislation requiring such a mandate. According to the legislation, “all mobile phones, tablets, digital cameras, headphones and headsets, handheld video game consoles, and portable speakers rechargeable by a wired cable must be fitted with a USB Type-C port.”
So Apple is now facing a “looming” EU law that would require all electronic gadgets to be charged using a USB-C cable, a move that appears to be a great step forward in terms of ease on the surface.
So why has Apple been so resistant till now? When Apple switched from the 30-pin connector to Lightning, the advantages were evident. The huge dock that caught dust and pocket lint and welcomed spilt beverages with open arms has been replaced by a smaller charger that works in any direction. It also paved the path for audio transfer, allowing Apple to ditch the inconvenient 3.5mm headphone jack.
If USB-C is coming to the iPhone, you’ll have to wait at least a year, as the iPhone 14 will likely stick on Lightning until 2023. All of Apple’s major iPhone accessories and its AirPods are expected to make the changeover.