Don’t Worry, Apple Will Probably Provide A 30-Pin Adapter For The Next iPhone’s 19-Pin Dock

Don’t Worry, Apple Will Probably Provide A 30-Pin Adapter For The Next iPhone’s 19-Pin Dock

The next iPhone’s dock will be only a fraction of the current size.

With rumors heating up again about the next iPhone featuring a smaller 19-pin dock connector, iMore is now saying that Apple will provide an adapter to give the upcoming iPhone’s smaller dock connector the ability to interface with 30-pin accessories and ports. As the site that originally started the smaller iPhone dock rumor, we have reason to believe that iMore’s report is accurate.

Thousands of accessory and peripheral makers have undoubtedly been shaking in their boots since the rumors started about a 19-pin connector in the sixth-gen iPhone, and Apple’s adapter should stem the tide until third-parties can make updated accessories for the new architecture.

Rene Ritchie of iMore:

We haven’t heard if one will be included in the box along with the iPhone 5, or will only be sold separately, but either way, come October, you’ll be able to get a new-to-old Dock adapter from Apple.

Of course, there will likely be some accessories that, due to the physical size or shape, are awkward or impossible to use with the Dock connector adapter, but anything that doesn’t require tight, flush contact should be okay.

Cult of Mac’s John Brownlee has explained the history and future of Apple’s 30-pin dock connector in great detail already, and the reason Apple will go to a smaller dock is simple: less pins are required for interfacing with accessories and other devices. Combined that fact with the rumors that the next iPhone will be significantly thinner than the 4S, and you’ve got plenty of reason for Apple to make the dock as small as possible.

Offering adapters for legacy tech is not uncharacteristic of Apple. For instance, you can buy a $10 MagSafe 1-to-2 power adapter for the new MacBook Pro with Retina display.

But have no fear: all of the 30-pin cables and accessories you currently own won’t suddenly be obsolete. Knowing Apple, you’ll probably have to pay $10-$30 for the new-to-old adapter, though.

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  • Tallest_Skil

    “Probably”? Come ON.

    If the MagSafe-MagSafe2 adapter is any indication, this one will be $10.

  • ??nD ??os??A

    I don’t buy the 19 pin number….I think it is way lower than that. I think it could be as low as 7 pins.
    Data +, Data -, PWR, GND, Left Out, Right Out, Audio GND. This assumes that the audio in pins would be accessed through the headphone jack only, and not the dock. I’d imagine there are a couple more power/GND pins to ensure they can charge up fast enough.

    I would guess it is a 10 pin dock, not 19. The shape of the connector in the pictures that have leaked make me at least think one pin would be lost and used as a key, otherwise the connector could be inserted the wrong way. I can’t see Apple killing off an interface that is nearly universal, despite being proprietary, just to save 11 pins.

    Speculating even more…we really don’t know how deep the socket is. So for all we know there is a second set of contacts even deeper in the socket….I have my fingers crossed for Thunderbolt being there. This would allow low power accessories and audio-only accessories to use a short stubby connector, and more advanced devices that have Thunderbolt to connect in the same socket, but with a longer connector. This sort of change I think I can see Apple justifying killing the 30-pin dock.

  • Nikolai Baker

    I’d bet money that one will be included with all next-gen devices which use it, but they’ll also sell it, so if you lose the one which came with your shiny new iPad you have to pay for another. I’d also reckon they’d only be supplied for a single generation, and after that you have to buy them if you want them.

  • Martin Dobson

    I’m sure that like all new tech, people will rant and complain to a deaf Apple wondering how their beloved company could do such a harm to them, this release has made all their accessories obsolete. Analysis will congregate in the masses predicting the end of the tech world as we know it. The media will demand a statement until they turn blue in the face…. …then a month will pass and all will be forgotten about the 30 pin dock connector. Hipsters will start trading the adaptors as currency… and the world will continue to turn.

About the author

Alex HeathAlex Heath has been a staff writer at Cult of Mac for over two years. He is also a co-host of the CultCast. He has been quoted by places like the BBC, KRON 4 News, and books like "ICONIC: A Photographic Tribute to Apple Innovation." If you want to get in touch, additional contact information is available on his personal site. Twitter always works too.

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