After a decade of Lightning, Apple could adopt USB-C on the iPhone 15 in 2023

The iPhone 15, arriving in 2023, has been predicted to finally ditch Lightning in favor of USB-C, an industry standard. A USB-C iPhone would be more than a convenience, it could help Apple deliver even faster charging and data transfer than Lightning.

A photograph focused on a male hand holding both ends of Apple's Lightning to USB-C cable in the foreground, with an iPhone laid on a table blurred out in the background.
  • Ming-Chi Kuo, who has earned a name for himself by becoming the most reliable analyst, thinks Apple is ready to finally ditch the Lightning port from its devices.
  • The first iPhone model with a USB-C port instead of Lightning should be the tentatively named iPhone 15, expected to arrive in the fall of 2023.
  • After more than a decade of its proprietary connector, Apple may be ready to move on. Better late than never—all our gadgets deserve USB-C.

iPhone 15 predicted to swap Lightning for USB-C

According to Kuo’s own survey of component suppliers, the iPhone 15 models coming in 2023 will ditch the company’s proprietary iPhone connector and adopt USB-C. As you know, USB-C supports faster data transfer speeds than Lightning. However, the iPhone 15’s actual USB-C port speed will depend on Apple’s implementation of the standard. To that end, Kuo’s Twitter notes that the arrival of USB-C to the iPhone “could improve iPhone’s transfer and charging speed in hardware designs,” before adding that the final specification and details will “depend on iOS support.” Read: How to erase everything on your iPhone and iPad

He wouldn’t speculate about why ditch Lightning at this point in time, but perhaps strict EU regulations may have something to do with it. USB-C adoption by the leading technology powerhouse on its best-selling gadget means more business for USB-C-related suppliers in Apple’s ecosystem. According to Kuo, those companies could easily become the market’s focus in the next 1-2 years, thanks to “vast orders” from Apple. And not just Apple because countless accessory makers will also follow in Apple’s footsteps, ditching the Lightning port to adopt USB-C.

But how trustworthy is this prediction?

Can Ming-Chi Kuo be trusted?

For starters, this is Ming-Chi Kuo—the most revered Apple analyst out there. For the most part, the analyst’s predictions are spot on because they’re drawn from accurate information obtained from Asian suppliers. On top of that, Kuo more than any other Apple analyst out there knows how to interpret the latest supply chain chatter. But more than anything, it’s never too late to retire Lightning and the timing for such a move could be perfect now. That’s because the iPad has almost finished transitioning to USB-C while the Mac notebooks have used USB-C since 2016.

iPhone 14 will be the last model with Lightning

Lightning is Apple’s proprietary standard for data and power transfer, with a licensing program available for makers of accessories that interface with Lightning. Apple is certainly earning big bucks through Lightning licensing, and some people have suspected that’s the reason why the company has held on to Lightning for this long. But after nearly a decade of using it on iPhones and some iPads, Apple would be wise to switch to the ubiquitous USB-C standard. Read: How to clone an iPhone

The Cupertino technology giant launched the Lightning connector as an upgrade over its 30-pin dock connector back in 2012 to replace the 30-pin connector (which had arrived on the original iPod in 2001). The first Apple devices to use Lightning were the iPhone 5, fifth-generation iPod touch and seventh-generation iPod nano.