Ardent Apple fans and consumer technology experts have longed for USB-C iPhones, but Apple hasn’t ditched the Lightning port yet. A new report suggests that bowing to pressure to conform to upcoming European regulations, Apple is testing a USB-C iPhone behind closed doors.
Citing people familiar with the matter, Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman claims Apple is testing iPhone models with USB-C ports and an adapter that would allow future USB-C iPhones to work with older accessories designed for devices with a Lightning connector.
The transition makes sense for Apple from a regulatory standpoint, and it would help with better compatibility across its ecosystem. The iPad and MacBook models have already switched to using USB-C. So, iPhone users cannot charge their iPhone with the same cable they use to juice up other Apple gadgets. Besides being unnecessary and clunky, Gurman highlights that the Lightning connector on the iPhone now goes against the company’s “penchant for simplicity.”
Versatility aside, adopting USB-C would also allow for faster data transfer over a wired connection and faster charging speeds. Moreover, the European Union’s legislation that could mandate USB-C looms over the horizon. Once the rules are passed, Apple could be forced to sell USB-C models in the EU alone, or transition the iPhone to USB-C worldwide.
The Bloomberg report corroborates Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo’s claim earlier this week. Kuo said that Apple plans to launch a USB-C iPhone sometime around 2023. Gurman’s report also mentions the same tentative launch window, saying the changes will see the light of day in 2023, at the earliest. The adapter Gurman mentioned earlier could also help Apple dodge regulatory troubles while continuing to use the iPhone’s Lightning connector.[Via Bloomberg]