By Christian Zibreg on Nov 15, 2012
JBL today announced a pair of interesting iOS docking stations with built-in support for Apple’s new Lightning I/O. Filed as JBL’s first-ever Lightning-enabled speakers, both the $199 OnBeat Venue LT and $99 OnBeat Micro also feature a built-in USB connector for hooking up non-Lightning music sources. The smaller OnBeat Micro is the perfect traveling companion due to its tiny footprint and support for standard batteries which can provide up to five hours of playback.
Its bigger brother, the Venue LT, can dock via a built-in Lightning port any iOS device with Lightning I/O, which currently entails the iPhone 5, the fifth-gen iPod touch, the new iPod nano, the iPad mini and the fourth-gen iPad… Read More
By Cody Lee on Nov 14, 2012
Good news this afternoon for Elevation Dock owners. The company behind the Kickstarter phenomenon, Elevation Labs, has released an official Lightning adapter for the dock allowing you to use it with your shiny new iPhone 5… Read More
By Cody Lee on Nov 14, 2012
It’s been nearly two months since Apple released the iPhone 5, and accessories for the handset are still extremely hard to find. So far all we’ve seen, as far as Apple-approved add-ons, are a car charger and sync dock from Belkin.
Good news this morning though. The California-based Scosche Industries has announced its own official lineup of Lightning accessories, which includes a wall charger, a car charger, and a retractable USB charging/sync cable… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Nov 8, 2012
We relayed word mid-October that Apple would hold a two-day discussion with third-parties in Shenzhen, China the following month in order to discuss terms an guidelines pertaining to Lightning-compatible accessories that bear the Made for iPhone / iPod / iPad (MFi) program logo. In spite of secrecy, one publication has learned a few topics that are being discussed at the meeting.
For starters, Lightning I/O is waterproof. So, knowing the dynamically assigned pins of the Lightning connector won’t corrode or degrade if dunked into water should make you feel good. I’m just taking a wild guess here, but it’s quite possible Apple made this move to appease a cottage industry around waterproof accessories. More tidbits below the fold… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Nov 5, 2012
Unofficial Lightning accessories that use cracked chips one-up Apple’s offering on price, but the “Made for iPhone” (MFi) stamp of approval has its advantages, mostly by reassuring buyers that MFi accessories meet Apple’s standards of quality and extensive testing. Belkin was the first third-party manufacturer out of the gate with 30-pin connector accessories back in 2003.
On Monday, it has also become the first official Apple partner to launch Lightning-enabled accessories. The company launched a car charger and a sync dock, both priced within reach of budget shoppers. Belkin is accepting pre-orders today, promising to ship the products later this month… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Nov 2, 2012
Apple’s been an avid supported of USB for years. With USB 3.0, not so much – at least not until first Mac notebooks with USB 3.0 support began rolling out of assembly lines last year. The company, however, never adopted the industry-standard Micro USB connector. Instead, and much to the horror of the multi-billion dollar accessory biz, it chose to replace its own bulky, decade-old proprietary 30-pin dock connector with Lightning, another proprietary connector similar in size to micro USB (there’s a reasonable explanation for that).
So, if you fancy connecting your Lightning-enabled mobile devices to micro USB cables and chargers to sync and charge, Apple comes to the rescue with its official Lightning to Micro USB Adapter. Originally released in Europe in September due to regulations mandating that all mobile phones be charged via commonplace micro USB adapters, it’s now finally available to U.S. customers. How much? Just $20. I know, don’t start… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Oct 30, 2012
As Apple prepares to convene with accessory makers next month in order to lay out new rules pertaining to third-party Lightning gear, companies like iPhone5mod continue to exploit the supply-demand imbalance in order to produce unofficial accessories like cables and adapters that all use cracked Lightning chips.
iPhone5mod already has a few of these in its offering and they’ve just announced another accessory which could easily strike a chord with long-time Apple fans: a Lightning dock. Just like it removed the optical drive from the new iMac, Apple with the iPhone 5 stopped making docks for Lightning devices. Therefore, this opportunity has basically presented itself… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Oct 24, 2012
iPhone5Mod previously released an interesting iPhone 5 Flash Lightning Dock, its first unauthorized Lightning-equipped accessory, and recently announced a nice backplate replacement for your iPhone 5. Today, they’re launching three new Lightning accessories set to ship November 3. Of course, these unsanctioned cables and adapters lure with low prices that significantly undercut Apple’s comparable offerings (think a 50 percent discount or more). We’ve got more information and nice promo clips right past the fold… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Oct 24, 2012
Per rumors, Apple yesterday alongside the iPad mini, a revamped iMac, refreshed Mac mini and the new 13-inch Retina MacBook Pro also took the wraps off some new Lightning accessories that will be of note to people who want to show off their presentations, apps, games and more on devices that accept HDMI or VGA input.
Each adapter commands a steep $49 price and is available now from the online Apple Store, with shipping estimates already slipped to a 2-3 week backorder. Apple also put on sale a more powerful USB iPad charger that now provides twelve watts of power instead of ten, helping with faster charge times… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Oct 23, 2012
According to a well-informed blog, in addition to the iPad mini and some new Macs, Apple today could also release a set of four new Lightning adapters and cables, two of which are aimed at providing compatibility with digital cameras via USB and SD cards, costing $29 each. The other two should provide a way to feed video from the device to external displays, projectors and other devices via the industry-standard VGA adapter or digital AV, priced at $49 each… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Oct 22, 2012
Apple has replaced its decade-old 30-pin connector with a brand new 9-pin Lightning plug in its latest round of iPhone and iPod refreshes last month. Per teardown, the new Lightning I/O has also brought with it an authentication chip that along with tightened ‘MFi’ terms is meant to prevent third parties from making unapproved accessories.
Adding insult to injury, it’s also been suggested that cracked chips which bypass its authentication functions are now available. Today, BGR posted images of several claimed third party authentication chips for Lightning USB cables.
Of course, the chips are not officially approved by Apple and present an ample opportunity for shady Chinese firms to manufacture Lightning cables, adapters and other accessories that should easily work with Lightning-equipped iOS devices while costing far less than Apple’s overpriced alternatives…. Read More
By Ed Sutherland on Oct 17, 2012
Apple is expected in early November to lay down the law to its developers on producing Lightning connectors. Among the Apple edicts: Lightning pins will be strictly controlled by the iPhone maker, which will provide them to “approved [developers] with production quantities of the pin once their product is determined to have met its standards and specifications,” according to TechCrunch.
As for potential knock-offs, the blog cites a source who warns lawsuits and import confiscations could be in their future. Without providing details, the source described as being “close to the program,” suggests the Cupertino, Calif. company will provide “additional security against low-quality copies” of the new iDevice connector… Read More
By Cody Lee on Oct 16, 2012
There’s been a lot of talk about Apple’s new dock connector lately. The company replaced its decade-old 30-pin connector with a new 9-pin Lightning plug in its latest round of iPhone and iPod refreshes last month.
Apple has reportedly added an authentication chip to its new cable to keep third party companies from making unapproved accessories. So the smart folks over at Chipworks decided to take a closer look at it… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Oct 12, 2012
According to a new study by ChangeWave Research, a 451 Research company, “massive iPhone 5 buying” continues despite a string of at times sensationalist reporting of various teething problems with the handset, ranging from the unwarranted cellular data usage and light leakage issues to the purple haze and virtual keyboard flickering woes.
More interesting than that, the study found that so-called Mapgate and incompatibilities with 30-pin accessories brought upon users by Apple’s new miniature Lightning connector literally had zero effect on iPhone 5 sales… Read More
By Cody Lee on Oct 11, 2012
Apple upset thousands of users last month when it introduced a new charging port for its mobile devices. It replaced the decade-old 30-pin dock connector with a new Lightning plug, rendering millions of cables and old accessories virtually useless.
Of course, Apple offers adapters that will allow users to connect their new iPhones and iPod touches to older accessories. But, at a minimum of $30 bucks a pop, this hasn’t exactly won over the angry. In fact, for some this may have been the last straw… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Oct 9, 2012
Apple’s new Lightning connector, currently utilized on the iPhone 5 and the new iPod touch and iPod nano, features an authentication chip, also found inside the Lightning cable. The chip, along with tightened ‘MFi’ terms, exists to ensure that only Apple-authorized Lightning accessories (like the Lightning to 30-pin adapter) function with Lightning-equipped iOS devices.
Some folks suspect it also serves to prevent third-party alternatives offered by places like Alibaba.com. I guess Apple won’t be too pleased realizing that cracked chips which bypass its authentication functions are now reportedly available… Read More
By Cody Lee on Oct 8, 2012
Good news today for folks who ordered, or were thinking about ordering, a Lightning to 30-pin adapter from Apple. Reports are coming in that the first round orders began shipping yesterday.
As you know, Apple debuted a new charging port in its new iPhone and iPod products last month. And until now, you couldn’t find an adapter that made old accessories work with the new port… Read More
By Cody Lee on Oct 3, 2012
Since the iPhone 5 launched two weeks ago with its new Lightning port, accessories have been extremely scarce. Lightning to USB cables alone have been hard to find, never mind docks and other add-ons.
Thus, we imagine we’ll be seeing a slew of do-it-yourself solutions pop up over the next few months. In fact, one has already surfaced involving an Elevation Dock, some hacking and a Lightning USB cable… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Oct 3, 2012
The tiny Lightning connector that debuted on the new iPhone, iPod touch and iPod nano allows Apple to exercise a much tighter control over the accessories ecosystem, it has been revealed. According to a new report out this morning, all vendors seeking to make products bearing the ‘Made for iPhone’ (MFi) trademark must be approved by Apple.
Additionally, club Cupertino is requiring vendors to manufacture their gear in Apple-approved facilities. Apple is currently educating them on the new terms so don’t expect first officially approved third-party Lightning accessories before late-October or November… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Oct 2, 2012
Apple’s new, miniaturized dock connector that debuted on the iPhone 5 under the Lightning moniker so far proved an annoyance as customers with legacy 30-pin dock accessories are required to purchase Apple’s pricey adapter. Worse, as Apple’s cable has an authentication chip, it has been concluded that third-party alternatives offered by places like Alibaba.com won’t work.
But as a patent filing indicates, Apple is researching an interesting solution that could help ease Lightning woes with a universal adapter for iOS devices which facilitates, as Apple wrote, “the transmission of wireless data to any accessory”… Read More