Rumor: Apple looking to ditch 30-pin dock connector

By , Feb 23, 2012

For years, the 30-pin charging ports on Apple’s mobile devices have gone largely unchanged. This has allowed consumers to use power cables and accessories purchased years ago with newer devices — a rare feature in the mobile industry.

But it looks like Apple might finally be looking to shake things up. iMore is reporting that it has learned that Apple may be getting ready to ditch its old charging/accessory port in favor of a new, smaller micro one…

Rene Ritchie of iMore writes:

“We’ve heard that Apple may be getting ready to ditch the dock connector as it’s currently sized and implemented on iPods, iPhones, and ipads. The reason isn’t anything political, like a new desire to conform to an outdated micro-USB standard, but typically Apple:to save space inside the iPhone 5 for what are now more important components.”

The report doesn’t say whether or not for sure we’ll see the new charging port this year, but Rene’s reasoning does sound plausible. Apple has been known to go through extreme measures to save space inside its devices, like when it moved the iPhone 4′s antenna to the outside of the handset. He also notes that with new features like iCloud and Wireless Sync, users are becoming less and less dependent on the USB cord — another valid point.

For what it’s worth, iMore’s sources are considered to be fairly credible. Two weeks ago, the site reported that Apple’s iPad 3 event would take place on March 7th, and got well-connected Jim Dalrymple’s “yep” of approval.

It’ll be interesting to see if this stuff materializes. It’s hard to imagine an iOS device without the 30-pin dock connector. But hey, it could happen.

What do you think?

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  • Anonymous

    Lol…. this made me laugh, “This has allowed consumers to use power cables and accessories purchased years ago with newer devices — a rare feature in the mobile industry.”

    I have never heard that retort to this issue, and I will say, eloquantly worded… but no, I would rather buy one mini USB and be able to use it for all my devices, then have all my devices on mini USB and this one have proprietary technology…

    No, apples stupid fucking goddamn proprietary plug has made it so if I go anywhere that doesnt have an iphone, I can’t find a charge, just thousands of useless mini USB connectors becasuse thats what the rest of the industry has moved on to……

    I love my iphone, but I will say that this alone is one my biggest reasons to hate on Apple,

    • Anonymous

      well someone has an mini usb plug up their butt :p

      kidding aside (and I was kidding) I think he’s just referring to the fact that is so rare to see any specific model or even phone make stick to the same port technology for that many years.
      Sure they change and a lot of other phones follow suit but it’s rare when a single model has the same type of connector generation after generation.

      I’ve had iphones and ipods and, more recently, ipads and it’s good to find the charger for any of them and plug whatever I need to plug.

      If you have phones, mp3 players and tablets of different brands, it’s rare that you can do the same, if not impossible.

      • Anonymous

        The OP is absolutely correct. Virtually every smartphone I can think of EXCEPT the iPhone has been using mini-usb for years. Let’s jot pretend that Apple is doing us a favor by being the lone, $30 exception to the rule.

      • Anonymous

        Fair enough, guys. I don’t think I got my point across AT ALL but fair enough :s

      • Anonymous

        I don’t know about smart phones – but I do know that I have 4-5 devices with different “mini” USB connectors. I have to blink several times when I have a device that actually fits the mini USB cable from another.

        So, I carry one apple device-USB cable, and 2-3 mini-USB cables with me. I assume they’d have an adaptor if they do change, so I wouldn’t have to carry a whole cord.

      • Anonymous

        Actually, I believe you are thinking of “Micro” USB cords. Mini USB cords were popular years ago with handsets like the original Motorola Razor, and the Motorola Q.

        You are correct otherwise though. Micro USB cords have become pretty much the standard for many handset manufacturers — but only recently. Up until two years ago, Nokia had its own proprietary port, so did Samsung, so did LG.

        That’s what I was referring to in the post.

        I sold cell phones for years and if I had a dollar for every time someone complained about having to purchase a new car charger for their new phone I would have a small fortune.

      • Anonymous

        You made your point quite clear, but you’re ignoring the past. The iPod has always had a proprietary connector and I seriously doubt that was done with a not-yet-existent iPhone and iPad in mind.

        Also consider that USB cables by and large have plummeted in price since then. Apple’s connectors, despite essentially being USB cables, have not. Draw your own conclusions.

      • http://www.facebook.com/people/Anthony-Smith/545326527 Anthony Smith

        Meh, worked out well for me the other day. iPhone was running out of charge while I was at the shops (draining the battery playing games while the missus shopped) So I walked into jbHiFi and plugged into one of the display docks to get some charge. I like the fact that almost everyone I know has an apple product and if I am running low on battery power there is a good chance the house I’m at will have a charger. (although this would obviously be less of an issue if they fixed the 4s battery problems, grrr)
        Also all the docks and such that they make with ipod/phone connectivity built in they do because it can cater to so many different people. iphone, ipad, various ipods… which means the dock company’s target audience is widened and they will put out more products. If you walked in to a shop right now how many dock type systems do you find compared to product compatible with the other smartphones?
        As always, each to there own but I liked this feature about the Apple products whether they intended it or not.

      • Anonymous

        Actually, a dock wouldn’t be necessary at all. Only a mini-usb cable which is probably on average easier to find than a dock cable. My point is that the dock connector hasn’t served Apple and their customers well — it has.
        Still, in my view the dock connector is more of a cash grab than a necessity.

      • Anonymous

        @shigmas

        Your right about that actually….. some mini USB don’t work in certain devices… totally stupid.

        “If it doesnt make dollars, then it doesn’t make sense”

    • Anonymous

      Proprietary ports and accessories serve only manufacturers means. Apple should just switch over to the industry standard micro usb. Just as virtually all manufacturers have now conformed to the standard 3.5 headset, which serves us customers nicely, because it’s a worldwide standard.

  • Adam Cohen

    i think its possible but they they would have some type of converter. female 30 pin to male whatever they decide on.

  • Anonymous

    ohh wow here we go now millions of folks will have to be silly adapters and dongles..

    • KewlDewd

      I’ve heard that this new connector will not require people to turn into adapters, but I know a few people who are already dongles. And yes, they are quite silly.

  • http://twitter.com/nomeacuerdo N.A.N. 

    Uhmm… Am I the only one who is thinking on the iPod shuffle with its own dock?

  • http://www.facebook.com/CL3M3NTY3O Clement Yeo

    new connector on Ipad 3 as well?

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1302778048 Michael Meade

    The thing that always pissed me off is that although the 30 pin connector hasn’t changed much, none of my newer iproducts work with my older accessories. My Altec Lansing speaker dock that I purchased with my 4G ipod classic will play music from my iphone or ipod touch, but won’t charge the battery. Same with my old FM transmitter dock. The firewire cable from the same ipod classic doesn’t work either. I always felt that was a big iscam…..constantly needing to update accessories with newer equipment.

    • http://twitter.com/SGeeZy Sean Geezy

      I actually had the same problem with my Altec Lansing speakers not charging my iPhone . I have the IM9′s and they have a input in the back where you can connect a 30 pin connector . I plug my iPhone charger in there & it magically chargers my phone ! lol a lil inconvenient because now you need 2 wall adapters & outlets , but it works . Those speakers are old , but they still sound great :) . Hope this helps out

    • Anonymous

      Exactly they say the connector hasn’t changed much but yet all my older docks and cables won’t charge my 4S. So yes there was a big change along the line. The connector physical design remained the same but I think power requirements changed and the older ones no longer sufficed.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/UEPEF3TT7IJ5INZGKSVBTZUYUY Bob Johnson

    What’s wrong with the 30 pin usb connector? I bet if apple switched the connectors, a lot of people would be angry because they need to replace all their acessories.

    • Anonymous

      You’re absolutely correct… this would impact so many people (including myself), that they may seriously consider moving to a platform that uses a generic USB connector.

      It would make an enormous infrastructure obsolete.

      But, then again, some people like re-inventing the wheel…

      • a smit

        when has apple ever been that accommodating to its customers?
        If apple wants, apple does. Whiny peasants have to learn to suck it up.

    • http://adam.hbang.ws/ Adam D

      Apple would probably release a micro-USB-to-30-pin dongle due to the number of accessories that would be obsoleted without one.

      Ad@m

  • Matt

    id like to see a magsafe like in macbooks

  • http://adam.hbang.ws/ Adam D

    Typo: “usb chord.”

    Ad@m

  • http://twitter.com/Dongiuj Giulio

    Sounds like an a-hole company to me! Change the plugs which means changing the connector on the device which means all of those products you purchased to connect your iPiece to docs or play music on big speakers etc etc will be pointless when you by a new iphone/iPod and what have you.
    Well, that was all a nice waste of money!

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1507068701 Jorit Studer

      I do kinda agree with but u can just buy plug which would plug the micro in a 30pin.
      And if Apple is really gonna change the plug the give u for sure a free ‘plug changer’ or however that’s called.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=708023726 Aaron Michael de Silva

    Noooo!! I love the 30pin connector because almost all my devices uses it. TV, Home Theatre System, Alarm Clock, Car Sound System, Projectors, Portable Chargers, universal Dock. It’s a silly thing for apple to change something so universal.

    • Anonymous

      lol, relative term being universal…. maybe in your Apple filled life…. but I am sure not every single person you know has these connectors at their house… if they do, then congrats this works for you… but not everyone uses apple everything

  • http://twitter.com/Benselmani Ben Selmani

    thunder bolt like connector?

  • http://twitter.com/melovestoast Jared Floyd

    I actually like that connector cord thingy. I hope they don’t take it away. but i see how on iPods its annoying to fit in there..

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100001542338517 Matt Alexander

    I never had a problem with that