Earlier this week, The Wall Street Journal released an intriguing report hinting that Apple could be contemplating finally abandoning its proprietary Lightning port in favor of the industry standard USB-C on the next-gen iPhone. But as it turns out, our excitement might have been a little premature.
Esteemed Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo today chimed in on the speculation, writing that all three next-generation iPhone models will retain the Lightning port. Instead, the Big A will likely introduce a series of internal changes to accommodate the much-desired fast charging capability.
The hardware tweaks will ultimately enable Apple to replicate some of the power benefits that come with USB Type-C and still maintain its signature Lightning connector. As 9to5Mac remarks, it remains unclear whether this rumor has any relation to previous reports about wireless charging.
Kuo further noted that although USB-C would certainly trump the capabilities of the Lightning connector, the Cupertino heavyweight has little incentive to make the transition. The report makes no reference as to how the possible adoption of USB-C fits in with the rest of the Apple ecosystem and upcoming iPad lineup.
As of now, the two primary reasons Kuo lists for sticking with Lightning are royalties from licensing deals as well as the compact size of the technology, which allows Apple to cram more tech into a smaller body.
As we mentioned in our initial coverage, while Apple would indeed lose some revenue from licensing deals, the transition to USB-C makes sense in light of the latest lineup of MacBook Pros – especially since the switch will enable customers to use the same cable for both their phones and laptops.
In any case, chances are we’ll likely have to wait at least one more year until Apple finally decides to make a radical design change in the iPhone that also happens to be user-friendly.