Earlier today, we reported on a Wall Street Journal story that stated that Apple might be dropping the proprietary Lightning port found on modern iOS devices in favour of the USB-C port. While the story goes on to say that it is more likely that Apple will be dropping the USB-A port at the end of Lightning cables in favour of USB-C ports (since that’s all you get on the new Macbook Pro machines). Given that this is just a rumour there’s no reason to get excited about the whole deal, but we can give you (and Apple) some very good reasons as to why they need to switch over to USB-C ports.
Going Universal is Good
For long, Apple has played the proprietary game, shielding its practices behind the excuse of “quality control.” With Apple ditching te 3.5mm headphone jack and many Android phone makers following suite, we’re going to see a lot of different headphones, earphones, and corresponding accessories. As of now, the 3.5mm headphone jack allowed for users to use any of their headphones with any phone. With Lightning and USB-C become the defacto audio-out port, those headphones are useless, unless you buy a converter accessory. If Apple was to ditch Lightning in favour of the more universal USB-C port, manufacturers could focus their funds on developing one product line instead of bifurcating their efforts in developing separately for iOS and separate for Android.
One Cable, One Charger
We’ve said this plenty enough, we firmly believe in a singular standard for cables and charging. While we have argued for why all Android manufacturers need to ditch proprietary charging methods so that any USB-C cable can be paired with any wall charger to allow fast charging of any Android phone. If Apple was to jump onto the same USB-C port party, we would no longer need to shell premium bucks for an Apple certified cable. This is because USB-C cables come with built-in micro-controller to regulate voltage and current.
Blazing Fast Data Transfer
The Lightning cable currently only supports USB 2.0 transfer speeds. This along with the fact that the iPad Pro is currently the only iOS device to feature a Lightning port capable of USB 3.0 speeds. If Apple was to switch over to using USB-C on future iOS devices, said devices could theoretically allow data transfer speeds up to 10Gbps as it supports the USB 3.1 transfer protocol. This means taking a local backup of your high-capacity iOS device wouldn’t take up hours and that you could transfer large amounts of data to the device rather quickly. After all, time is money.
An all round eco-friendly solution
Apple is regarded as one of the most eco-friendly tech companies (after Tesla of course). Their focus on recycling and even using sustainable practices for the manufacturing of their devices have earned them accolades worldwide. Yet, one of the most wasteful things is the Lightning cable. IF you’ve owned an iOS device, you’ve probably gone through a number of Lightning cables which tend to fray at the joint between the cable and the connector, rendering them useless. Poor quality of cables mean more of them end up getting tossed out. If Apple were to switch to USB-C, it would mean a singular cable format circulating across the world, and in the event yours does break, you’d easily be able to find a spare within your own home or friend circle. We know Android users whose micro-USB cables are now more than half a decade old and still working fine. In fact, this author’s USB-C cable that shipped with the OnePlus 2 two and a half years ago, still works like new despite the fact that the cable goes everywhere with him.
There’s a lot of rumours and a lot of speculation around the next iPhone that Apple will release. One rumour looked at the removal of the Home Button and we talked about how that might be a good idea. Now, we’re looking at a future of devices that could be bound together by USB-C and what a glorious future that will be.