Apple reportedly testing new iPhones with a USB-C port

FeD

Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,218
Apple is one of the biggest players in the development and promotion of USB-C. In fact, its design is exactly a more compact version of an existing Apple connector.

iPhone getting USB-C is just coming full circle.
They're not, in fact they're one of the companies that haven't kept true to the agreements made in '09 where companies promised to standardise a single charging format.

Source

The European Union is threatening to get tough on Apple and other companies which promised to standardize on a single charging port across brands, but have failed to do so …

Apple was one of 14 companies to sign an undertaking back in 2009 to harmonize their phone charging ports. The idea was that if everyone used the same physical connectors and power inputs, consumers wouldn’t need to change chargers when switching from one brand of phone to another. That would reduce costs for consumers, and result in less environmental damage from obsolete chargers.
The companies promised to adopt a single standard – the MicroUSB port – by 2011. However, that agreement expired without action in 2012, when Apple of course replaced its old 30-pin connector with Lightning.
Reuters now reports that the EU is considering its options with regard to enforcement, including possible laws to make adoption of a single standard a legal requirement.
While the EU initiative made sense in theory, the time taken by these things was always going to make it a non-starter. The original agreement allowed for a two-year period, and was subsequently extended. In the meantime, of course, technology moves on. If companies had adopted the MicroUSB standard in 2014, when the agreement was last renewed, it would have delayed their ability to make a later switch to USB-C.
The EU’s move does seem to be timed without much tech awareness. Almost all companies are voluntarily adopting USB-C, with Apple the lone holdout – for now, at least.
 

DavidDesu

Member
Oct 29, 2017
2,334
Glasgow, Scotland
USB-C seems future proofed for a long time to come, there's no reason to change ports for at least a couple of decades, maybe even longer. It's great for consumers, should never have taken this long getting to this stage. Fuck proprietary bullshit connectors.
 

MrKlaw

Member
Oct 25, 2017
7,049
I hope so, it's dumb that my iPad pro and iphone need diffrent connectors.
I hope not - its so dumb I'll have to replace all my lightning chargers with USB C ones and nothing else in my house uses USB-C except the switch

We always get this 'about time, USB C is so much more common' - no it isn't. If you want common use micro USB (urgh). USB-C is still new, still a little lacking in stability with various implementations and power standards.

I'd be ok getting USB C but also ok not.
 

behOemoth

Member
Oct 27, 2017
1,101
We always get this 'about time, USB C is so much more common' - no it isn't. If you want common use micro USB (urgh). USB-C is still new, still a little lacking in stability with various implementations and power standards.
I think that was one major point why Apple kept lightning for so long.
 

emag

Member
Oct 26, 2017
4,607
Apple makes computers, too. They're on the USB committee and their engineers worked on the design of USB-C. They were the first major player to go with USB-C on laptops (much as they were the first major player to push USB in the first place twenty years ago).
 

WickedCobra03

Member
Oct 27, 2017
521
Total bullshit.

My wife's 2013 5s not only runs Apple supported iOS 12 - but everything she uses it for (Safari, Netflix, Photos, Facebook, Camera, Music, Podcasts, etc etc) still runs smooth as silk.
I will say, this is the one thing that has been great about apple. They at least give you some time with a piece of hardware. Like I have been able to keep my iPhones for 3-4 years each before going onto a new model.
 

dem

Member
Nov 3, 2017
335
I can’t get used to that scraping feeling when you plug in usb-c..

Just doesn’t feel good
 

jts

Member
Oct 26, 2017
2,864
They're not, in fact they're one of the companies that haven't kept true to the agreements made in '09 where companies promised to standardise a single charging format.

Source
That doesn’t change anything in what I said? Micro-USB was always a poor standard to begin with, and the deal with UE resulted in Apple manufacturing an official micro-USB to Lightning adapter. With USB-C Apple released what was probably the first decent scale consumer device in MacBook (2015) followed by the MacBook Pro switching entirely to USB-C the following year. Since then more Apple devices have been adopting it and the iPhone is the natural conclusion.
 

Veliladon

Member
Oct 27, 2017
2,196
I think that was one major point why Apple kept lightning for so long.
Lightning was an outgrowth of the 30 pin connector. Every time new functionality came out, Apple used a few more of the reserved pins on the connector for new functionality. This had two problems, they ran out of pins and some of the pins were used for obsolete things (Firewire, anybody? That's built into the 30-pin spec). Lightning was an attempt to move as much as possible to the PHY and just leave the pins as a dumb high speed serial link. Basically it's GPIO on steroids. You get 5V, two high speed serial lanes, and a ground. Want to support DisplayPort on Lightning? You plug into Lightning, send display data over the link, the dongle does the work translating the high speed serial to DisplayPort. Want to support the next display standard on Lightning? You have a new dongle that does the same thing with the same Lightning interface.
 

The Artisan

Member
Oct 27, 2017
4,692
Welp, I’m tired of using iPhones anyway. On the 8 and had em since the 4 and I’m guessing the google pixel 3xl uses usbc
 

Futureman

Member
Oct 26, 2017
3,346
My past three phones have been iPhone, Galaxy, Pixel so I think I may go iPhone next upgrade.

If they switch to USBC it would make the decision easier. Everything I've been buying lately (Pixel XL 2, iPad Pro, Mac Mini) is USBC so I don't want to go back to something proprietary.
 

Zaph

Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,508
I'm on an iPhone X and if the next refresh isn't USB-C, I will probably consider alternatives for the first time in 10 years.

Smartphones in general have become so good and homogenous, that all I really care about now is convenience. My laptop, monitor(s), PC and even keyboard all support it, and I just want to be able to carry one cable and a powerpack. Wireless isn't a good enough substitute just yet.
 

Futureman

Member
Oct 26, 2017
3,346
My past three phones have been iPhone, Galaxy, Pixel so I think I may go iPhone next upgrade.

If they switch to USBC it would make the decision easier. Everything I've been buying lately (Pixel XL 2, iPad Pro, Mac Mini) is USBC so I don't want to go back to something proprietary.
actually... to quote myself... if iPhones don't drop in price in the US I'll probably stick with Android. Don't want to spend $900+ for the latest model.

I could see getting something like an XR3 though (XL 2 should last another 2 years for me) if it drops in price a bit and the make it a little smaller or improve the resolution.
 

jts

Member
Oct 26, 2017
2,864
I wouldn’t be surprised if there is a split in Lightning/USB-C models next year like with the iPad. Can see Lightning dying a slow death instead of a quicker one. I guess we’ll see soon by the newest devices. New iPads and Airpods should give a good indication of the immediate future for Lightning.
 

LeleSocho

Member
Dec 3, 2017
1,867
no shit?
hardware manufacturers test shit all the time, you are delusional if you think apple never tested an iPhone with micro usb or even full size usb-a
 

Veliladon

Member
Oct 27, 2017
2,196
I wouldn’t be surprised if there is a split in Lightning/USB-C models next year like with the iPad. Can see Lightning dying a slow death instead of a quicker one.
The biggest problem with Lightning, and why Apple is probably going to sunset it in the new couple of years, is that they only have a single 5V line on the cable for power. With the new phones needing to charge faster this practically limits you to about 12W maybe 15W if you push the cable to its absolute limit. The USB-C variants can negotiate higher voltages on the power pin letting the cables carry more power. The iPad Pro for instance will happily switch to 12V/2A to pull 24W to charge on. You can't do that with Lightning.
 

8byte

Member
Oct 28, 2017
4,545
Kansas
Awesome, in a year or so I'll be up for an upgrade on my iPhone 8+, so I'll gladly wait for a USBC iPhone.
 

Zeyphersan

Avenger
Oct 26, 2017
4,373
California
The biggest problem with Lightning, and why Apple is probably going to sunset it in the new couple of years, is that they only have a single 5V line on the cable for power. With the new phones needing to charge faster this practically limits you to about 12W maybe 15W if you push the cable to its absolute limit. The USB-C variants can negotiate higher voltages on the power pin letting the cables carry more power. The iPad Pro for instance will happily switch to 12V/2A to pull 24W to charge on. You can't do that with Lightning.
You can, actually. The first and second gen iPad Pros, which used Lightning, could pull 29W over a USB-C to Lightning cable. And the iPhone X/XS/XR can pull around 18W using that same cable
 

lunarworks

Member
Oct 25, 2017
6,126
Toronto
Lightning was an outgrowth of the 30 pin connector. Every time new functionality came out, Apple used a few more of the reserved pins on the connector for new functionality. This had two problems, they ran out of pins and some of the pins were used for obsolete things (Firewire, anybody? That's built into the 30-pin spec). Lightning was an attempt to move as much as possible to the PHY and just leave the pins as a dumb high speed serial link. Basically it's GPIO on steroids. You get 5V, two high speed serial lanes, and a ground. Want to support DisplayPort on Lightning? You plug into Lightning, send display data over the link, the dongle does the work translating the high speed serial to DisplayPort. Want to support the next display standard on Lightning? You have a new dongle that does the same thing with the same Lightning interface.
Hey, FireWire was awesome. It was so much better than USB for data-intensive use cases, and it's a damn shame the licensing for it was so screwed up. At least ThunderBolt seems to be picking up where FireWire failed.
 

Breqesk

Member
Oct 28, 2017
2,789
How do you get tired of using any kind of phone? The vast majority of phone use is apps, that’s the same regardless of the OS.
well, I’m tired of my Pixel ‘cause of this.

it’d probably be less shitty - but still shitty - if I had a newer phone. I’m still thinking of going iPhone for the first time in nearly a decade next time though, primarily to avoid it. Of course, that’ll come with its own frustrations...
 

TI92

Alt account
Banned
Oct 25, 2017
5,598
Would be awesome if true. USB C is a great cable and being able to charge iPad MacBook and iPhone with the same cable would be great.
 

TI92

Alt account
Banned
Oct 25, 2017
5,598
No it's not all metal.

Like the outer-most part of the port is metal and then inside is white plastic.

Yeah I've tried toothpicks, toothpicks with a bit of paper towel on them, q-tips with some of the cotton removed so it can fit in the port, even those little brush looking flosspicks. Nothing worked. I think my port is in especially poor shape where it basically would need to be replaced if I want it looking new again.
Jom you already upgraded to OnePlus I thought? Why worry about such iPhone nonsense 😅
 
Oct 28, 2017
3,306
I hope not - its so dumb I'll have to replace all my lightning chargers with USB C ones and nothing else in my house uses USB-C except the switch

We always get this 'about time, USB C is so much more common' - no it isn't. If you want common use micro USB (urgh). USB-C is still new, still a little lacking in stability with various implementations and power standards.

I'd be ok getting USB C but also ok not.
It’s not going to become standard overnight. But when all smart phones move to usb c, that will significantly impact and advance its standardization.
 
Oct 28, 2017
570
Dublin
Micro USB was absolutely terrible. There is nothing redeeming about it other than size.
I stopped myself from buying a pair of Beats Studios because the connector is MicroUSB. Worst port ever.

USB C is just as good as lightning, I’m glad that is the new standard. And it’s about time it arrived on iPhone. I guess we could all see it coming with the iPad Pro.
 

TI92

Alt account
Banned
Oct 25, 2017
5,598
I hope not - its so dumb I'll have to replace all my lightning chargers with USB C ones and nothing else in my house uses USB-C except the switch

We always get this 'about time, USB C is so much more common' - no it isn't. If you want common use micro USB (urgh). USB-C is still new, still a little lacking in stability with various implementations and power standards.

I'd be ok getting USB C but also ok not.
I've had usb C phones for what, 4 years now? Whenever the Nexus 6p came out. It's not new it's the standard now. I'm sorry you are slow to adopt but don't let that hold the rest of us back.
 

lt519

Member
Oct 25, 2017
2,816
For what it's worth, I've been using USB-C phones for the past four years or so, and I've never had a cable or port 'get loose'. I actually prefer it to my iPad's Lightning cable, which I've always found to take too much force to plug in--it's awkward if you're trying to do it with one hand, with nothing to brace the iPad against. (This is a surprisingly common scenario, I've found.)
My Nexus 6P USB-C port is loose now after 3 years, the plug will wiggle in it and it only charges when held at a certain angle. It is to the point that I have to prop the phone up to charge it.
 

TI92

Alt account
Banned
Oct 25, 2017
5,598
My Nexus 6P USB-C port is loose now after 3 years, the plug will wiggle in it and it only charges when held at a certain angle. It is to the point that I have to prop the phone up to charge it.
Happens to iPhones often too. It's why wireless charging or magnetic chargers are so good.
 

lt519

Member
Oct 25, 2017
2,816
Happens to iPhones often too. It's why wireless charging or magnetic chargers are so good.
Yeah, I've owned Nexus phones for a while, I was pissed when they took that capability away from the 6P when I had it with the 5.

I do like USB-C much better but wasn't aware that loosening ports were common with it until I read this thread. I had opened my phone to replace the battery, on more than one occasion, and figured I just screwed something up this time.
 

DTJAAAAM

Member
Oct 25, 2017
293
Seattle, WA
Will likely switch from Android if this happens. Been dipping more and more into the Apple ecosystem ever since getting an iPad Pro and a MacBook.
 

Foltzie

The Fallen
Oct 26, 2017
1,047
I'm late to this chat, but these posts highlight understandable, if misguided, thoughts on changing of I/O ports, since the transition can be painful.

Good for them. But, it sorta says fuck you to everyone that bought an iPhone in the past few years.
The 30pin dock connector was in use for 9 years (2003-2012). The lightning connector for 6-7 years (2012-201x), assuming apple's 2019 iOS devices use USB-C. I dont know how long I/O ports should remain, but over half a decade seems reasonable, assuming its replacement offers something more in terms of utility. I would say the now ubiquity and better physical fault tolerance of USB-C counts, but Lightning still has at least one perk, that being that the internal port is smaller than USB-C.
Lightning ports should have never existed.
USB-C came about because of the lightning connector and it wasn't available as a draft spec until 2014 with the first real devices using it in 2015 around when the 12inch MacBook was release. This would have left at least a 3.5 year gap that would have been longer had Apple not moved, since other companies we comfortable with Micro-USB (and some comfortable with the atrocity that was Micro-USB 3 ports).

Given that apple is known to make a fair amount of money from the MFi program, I'm pleasantly surprise that this is being considered. Many companies would milk the proverbial cow until the end. Of course Apple could license MFi approved USB-C cables, but that seems less likely if they dont own the spec.
 

dem

Member
Nov 3, 2017
335
Happens to iPhones often too. It's why wireless charging or magnetic chargers are so good.
It really doesn't.
I've never seen a loose lightning port.. and I manage 1000+ ios devices at work with kids plugging/unplugging all day.

NEVER had a broken lightning port.

I get broken off headphone plugs every other week.


I can already tell the USB-C port on my macbook seems a bit loose and janky. Lightning is god tier.