USB-C Connector

What Is USB-C?

USB-C is the emerging industry-standard connector for transmitting both data and power. The USB-C connector was developed by the USB Implementers Forum, the group of companies that has developed, certified, and shepherded the USB standard. It counts more than 700 companies in its membership, including Apple, Dell, HP, Intel, Microsoft, and Samsung. This is important, because it’s part of why USB-C has been so readily accepted by PC manufacturers. Contrast this with the earlier Apple-promoted (and developed) Lightning and MagSafe connectors, which had limited acceptance beyond Apple products, and, because of USB-C, are soon to be completely obsolete.

According to The Apple Insiders , Apple will replace the Lightning connector in the iPhone with a USB-C port, bringing it in line with the MacBook and the MacBook Pro.

That’s not a rumor we’ve heard previously, but The Wall Street Journal is a reputable source that often accurately predicts Apple’s plans. Unfortunately, a second well-known source, KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, says The Wall Street Journal’s report is inaccurate and that all three upcoming iPhone 8 models will continue to include Lightning ports.

Given that The Wall Street Journal provided so little information on the replacement of the Lightning port with USB-C (it’s just one line in a wider story on a curved OLED display), and the fact that its removal sounds a bit far-fetched, Kuo’s information is more believable at this point in time.

While a Lightning port is expected, Kuo believes Apple could implement USB Type-C Power Delivery technology (while still using the Lightning port) to offer a fast charging feature that would allow the iPhone to charge more quickly. Fast charging is already a feature available in the 12.9-inch iPad Pro using a Lightning to USB-C cable.

Barclays analyst Blayne Curtis agrees with Kuo and believes Apple will stick to Lightning. He thinks Apple may introduce a Lightning to USB-C adapter in European countries, though, to adhere to a the European Commission’s “one mobile phone charger for all” campaign.

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