or Connect
AppleInsider › Forums › Mobile › iPhone › Apple's Lightning port dynamically assigns pins to allow for reversible use
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Apple's Lightning port dynamically assigns pins to allow for reversible use

post #1 of 47
Thread Starter 
A cabling expert has taken a closer look at how Apple's new Lightning connector works, and has come to the conclusion that the 8 pins on each side of the plug are dynamically assigned, likely thanks to the use of a unique chip in the iPhone 5.

Peter from Double Helix Cables first shared with AppleInsider last week his discovery that Apple's new Lightning connector cables feature integrated authentication chips. He has since taken an even closer look at Lightning and concluded that the layout of the pins must be dynamically assigned based on how the cable is physically plugged in to a device like the iPhone 5.

When it unveiled Lightning earlier this month, Apple noted that the new, all-digital connector "features an adaptive interface that uses only the signals that each accessory requires." But Peter's testing has shown that Apple's cable goes even further to allow for reversible use in either orientation.

Lightning


Some features of the Lightning cable, such as USB power connections, are symmetrical on each side of the plug. That means that if the pins on Lightning are numbered from one to eight on each side, pin one on the top row connects with pin eight on the bottom row.

This allows users to flip the connector and plug Lightning into an iPhone 5 in either orientation. With this design decision, the lower right pin always makes contact with the same spot in the corresponding Lightning jack on the iPhone.

However, while the USB power connection is symmetrical, Peter's testing found that the data connections in Lightning are actually asymmetrical. As such, he believes that dynamic Lightning pin assignment is performed by a chip included on the iPhone 5.

"Take top pin 2 for example," he wrote in an e-mail to AppleInsider. "It is contiguous, electrically, with bottom pin 2. So, as the plug is inserted into the iPhone, if you have the cable in one way, pin 2 would go into the left side of the jack, flip it the other way and the same pair of pins is going to match up with the other side of the jack (as the electrical contacts in the iPhone's jacks are along the bottom)."

Lightning
Apple's new Lightning connector, as mapped out by Peter Bradstock of Double Helix Cables.


Peter believes that the iPhone 5 Lightning port probably reads the type of data being sent from one of the pins, and then dynamically adjusts based on the orientation that the cable has been inserted.

"Dynamic assignment of the pins is the only way for the USB data to be routed, since I've proven that top pin 2 and bottom pin 2 are the pins that go to the Data+ connection of the USB," he said.

Dynamic pin assignment performed by the iPhone 5 could also help explain the inclusion of authentication chips within Lighting cables. The chip is located between the V+ contact of the USB and the power pin of the Lightning plug.

Given the apparent complexity of the new Lightning plug, Apple has seen a shortage of Lightning cables following the launch of the iPhone 5. This week, analyst Ming-Chi Kuo of KGI informed AppleInsider that the shortage has been caused by a change in supplier weighting, as well as low yield rates of the new cables.

Lightning


The new Lightning cable and accompanying port are about 80 percent smaller than the legacy 30-pin dock connector. As a result, manufacturing Lightning cables has proven to be complex and has decreased the yield rate.

The inclusion of an authentication chip in Apple's Lightning cables means consumers are advised to steer clear of cheap third-party cables that have appeared for sale online out of the Far East. According to Peter, there is "basically no way those are functional cables."
post #2 of 47
Does this mean the chip is not required if a cable is produced that is not reversible?
post #3 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lerxt View Post

Does this mean the chip is not required if a cable is produced that is not reversible?

Not really. Because the lack of the cheap would most probably never activate the Lightning port in any USB mode ("normal" or "reverted").

post #4 of 47

That would make a "Simple" (cheap) charging cable easier to make
 

post #5 of 47

One possibility: when the "authentication/control" chip signals the Lightning connector that a USB cable is present, BOTH connector 2 and 7 could be assigned to the D+ and 3 and 6 assigned to D- in the Lightning port on the iPhone.

That way, depending it on which way you insert your plug, pins 2 and 3 in the cable would connect with either the plug 2/3 or 7/6 pairs.

post #6 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by smiffy31 View Post

That would make a "Simple" (cheap) charging cable easier to make
 

If the iPhone expects a chip to be present to activate any mode, this would fail.

post #7 of 47
I had this argument with my friend before. You see -- Most of us only need 1 data cable. The rest of the cables are purely for charging the phone. As long as those third party cables can charge the phone properly, then they serves their purpose for most of us.
Edited by Avonord - 9/25/12 at 11:19am
post #8 of 47

deleted


Edited by FredrikE - 9/25/12 at 8:01am
post #9 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by Avonord View Post

I had this argument with my friend before. You see -- Most of us only need 1 data cable. The rest of the cables are purely for charging the phone. As long as those third party cables can charge the phone properly, then it serves their purpose for most of us.

 

Exactly. I will only have to get one expensive chipped cable and a bunch for charging only (home, work, car, laptop bag, travel bag). Works for me.

 

But it raises the micro USB question again. If the cable's chip dynamically assigns the pins and can revert to a simple pin out when no corresponding chip is present, then why not terminate it in the micro USB used by 95% of portable electronic devices today. Everything without the chip could still charge the phone AND any accessory with the chip could take advantage of all the dynamic pin assignments. That way the world would need one fewer charging cable. The apologist will say Apple needs the extra pin (nonsense) or some other excuse. I think the real reason is Apple's arrogance.

post #10 of 47

I hope the phone PHY for the Lightning cable is robust.

post #11 of 47
Can someone explain how consumers benefit from authentication chips within cables?

Sure it's clever to switch the connections based on the way it's inserted but Apple could just make a 'mirrored connector' instead (same pin connections on each side).

It looks like it is just a way for Apple to prevent 3rd parties making cables, instead they have to sign up to Apple's licensing & manufacture to Apple's specs.
post #12 of 47
Apple do provide specifications to anyone who wants to build a Lightning dock or cable. Even a authentication should not be a problem. With enough volume, I'm sure someone can produce it cheap. If they can make Furby for $60 I'm sure they can make the cable for less than $5.
post #13 of 47

All those numbers confuse me... so I think I'll use a random combination of them on my EuroMillions lottery ticket tonight!

post #14 of 47
Nailed it! I forget who was saying I was stupid for thinking Apple would use adaptive pins for this new connector. I doubt they'll speak up now.

I do wonder pins 2 and 7 (the power pins) are used for the association. You alter the impedance slightly or have the chip communicate over one or the other pin and the device's chip's will be able to know instantly which pins are for which orientation of the plug.

I feel as if the charging and syncing is faster with the new connector. I look forward to AnandTech's thorough review which should reveal this is it exists.



Quote:
Originally Posted by UrbanVoyeur View Post

But it raises the micro USB question again. If the cable's chip dynamically assigns the pins and can revert to a simple pin out when no corresponding chip is present, then why not terminate it in the micro USB used by 95% of portable electronic devices today. Everything without the chip could still charge the phone AND any accessory with the chip could take advantage of all the dynamic pin assignments. That way the world would need one fewer charging cable. The apologist will say Apple needs the extra pin (nonsense) or some other excuse. I think the real reason is Apple's arrogance.

Because Lightening can act as dumb as Micro-USB is no argument that Lightening should have scraped, all its features be removed, and a far inferior connector be used.

I don't understand why you et al. purposely ignore the mandate on the EPS ruling. You know damn well it has nothing to do with the cabling but with the EPS. You also know damn well that Apple has been in compliance for 8 years with their EPS having a USB-A connector so that any vendor can use their EPS. Don't pretend you aren't aware of this.

"The real haunted empire?  It's the New York Times." ~SockRolid

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

Reply

"The real haunted empire?  It's the New York Times." ~SockRolid

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

Reply
post #15 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by UrbanVoyeur View Post

 

Exactly. I will only have to get one expensive chipped cable and a bunch for charging only (home, work, car, laptop bag, travel bag). Works for me.

 

But it raises the micro USB question again. If the cable's chip dynamically assigns the pins and can revert to a simple pin out when no corresponding chip is present, then why not terminate it in the micro USB used by 95% of portable electronic devices today. Everything without the chip could still charge the phone AND any accessory with the chip could take advantage of all the dynamic pin assignments. That way the world would need one fewer charging cable. The apologist will say Apple needs the extra pin (nonsense) or some other excuse. I think the real reason is Apple's arrogance.

 

Micro USB connectors cannot carry the 2 amp current used to charge the iPad, it would take longer to charge. Try connecting an iPad or iPhone to a low power USB port (e.g. a Mac keyboard) and see how well that works. 

Apple seem to want 'one connector' to do everything, from the iPod Nano up to the iPad. The tiny pins on Micro USB were not designed to take the higher current of the iPad. Those tiny pins are also fragile, sadly the standards bodies picked the crappy option to promote as 'the standard'.

 

You can buy a Micro USB to Lightening adapter if you want to test the iPad charging theory, I suspect the adapter has the authentication chips within it.

 

I think your theory that cheap cables will just work for charging is misguided. Apple put these chips in to sense if cables are up to spec. I doubt they will allow charging from cables that don't do the required negotiation first. I hope I am wrong. 

post #16 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by FredrikE View Post

deleted

And how does data work regardless of how plug it in if the device isn't dynamically routing the data?

"The real haunted empire?  It's the New York Times." ~SockRolid

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

Reply

"The real haunted empire?  It's the New York Times." ~SockRolid

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

Reply
post #17 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by UrbanVoyeur View Post

Exactly. I will only have to get one expensive chipped cable and a bunch for charging only (home, work, car, laptop bag, travel bag). Works for me.

But it raises the micro USB question again. If the cable's chip dynamically assigns the pins and can revert to a simple pin out when no corresponding chip is present, then why not terminate it in the micro USB used by 95% of portable electronic devices today. Everything without the chip could still charge the phone AND any accessory with the chip could take advantage of all the dynamic pin assignments. That way the world would need one fewer charging cable. The apologist will say Apple needs the extra pin (nonsense) or some other excuse. I think the real reason is Apple's arrogance.

Because USB ports are only allowed to be used as USB ports. You may recall Intel running into this problem when they wanted to use the USB port for Lightpeak (Thunderbolt).

I believe if Apple chose to use a Micro USB port, they would be restricted to protocols and configurations that are part of the Micro USB standard.
post #18 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by Droid View Post

Can someone explain how consumers benefit from authentication chips within cables?
Sure it's clever to switch the connections based on the way it's inserted but Apple could just make a 'mirrored connector' instead (same pin connections on each side).
It looks like it is just a way for Apple to prevent 3rd parties making cables, instead they have to sign up to Apple's licensing & manufacture to Apple's specs.

 

It really depends on what you call "authentication chips".

 

If the purpose of a "chips within cables" is purely to enforce DRMs and ensure manufacturers pays a fees to Apple then indeed everybody loses except Apple shareholders (until demand lowers because of such pratices).

 

However, if the "chip within cable" has a purpose, as in the Thunderbolt cables or here to be able to specify which kind of cable this is and hence which pin mapping the iPhone 5 should use, then the user slightly loses because cables are more expensive (even without paying any Apple fee - or tax) because those cables are more complex to manufacture, but the user also gains from a sturdy, durable, compact and versatile connector that allows high energy current and various usage pattern a plain old cable would not allow.

post #19 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post

Nailed it! I forget who was saying I was stupid for thinking Apple would use adaptive pins for this new connector. I doubt they'll speak up now.

 

Actually, if you were to look back over the comments, you'll note that I continually maintained that the cable would be chipped to support higher speeds and updates to protocols. (True.) I said that the plug was data only. (True.) I also said one approach to making the connector reversible was mirroring the pin-outs, which, apparently, they did for the power line, if not for the entire plug. Speaking of reversible...

Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post

Because they're Apple and yet no non-cylindrical data connector of theirs has ever been reversible?

 

'Nuff said.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX 
So lets consider your 8 pin design and then consider that USB 3.0 used 9 pins. Then lets consider the other pins that video out and audio line-out need, not to mention the other pins Apple has used and still uses in their dock connector for the accessories they have. Tell me how killing off the accessories market is your idea of thinking.

 

First, you'll also note that video out and audio line out are NOT part of the specification. Lightning is all-digital. (True.) The 30-pin adaptor and the Lightning to HDMI adaptor both contain chips and digital-analog converters in the ADAPTORS, not in the phone. Hence, your assertion that signaling in the cable would cause "sophisticated" circuitry in the phone to switch the lines to audio or video line outs is flat out wrong.

 

And you'll also note that Apple is, in fact, "killing off" the existing accessory market. Existing devices will use the adaptor or get tossed. Newer devices will use the new connector, or, as I also maintained, switch to Bluetooth and/or AirPlay. (True.) 

 

So... what did you nail, exactly? (grin)

post #20 of 47

One other thing I've not really seen mentioned, is that the Lightning port can also function as a USB host, not just as a client. This -- with the proper adaptor -- would allow cameras and other peripherals to be connected to an iPhone or iPad.

post #21 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by ahmlco View Post

 

Actually, if you were to look back over the comments, you'll note that I continually maintained that the cable would be chipped to support higher speeds and updates to protocols. (True.) I said that the plug was data only. (True.) I also said one approach to making the connector reversible was mirroring the pin-outs, which, apparently, they did for the power line, if not for the entire plug. Speaking of reversible...

 

'Nuff said.

 

 

First, you'll also note that video out and audio line out are NOT part of the specification. Lightning is all-digital. (True.) The 30-pin adaptor and the Lightning to HDMI adaptor both contain chips and digital-analog converters in the ADAPTORS, not in the phone. Hence, your assertion that signaling in the cable would cause "sophisticated" circuitry in the phone to switch the lines to audio or video line outs is flat out wrong.

 

And you'll also note that Apple is, in fact, "killing off" the existing accessory market. Existing devices will use the adaptor or get tossed. Newer devices will use the new connector, or, as I also maintained, switch to Bluetooth and/or AirPlay. (True.) 

 

So... what did you nail, exactly? (grin)

man you're obnoxious 

post #22 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by ahmlco View Post

Actually, if you were to look back over the comments, you'll note that I continually maintained that the cable would be chipped to support higher speeds and updates to protocols. (True.) I said that the plug was data only. (True.) I also said one approach to making the connector reversible was mirroring the pin-outs, which, apparently, they did for the power line, if not for the entire plug. Speaking of reversible...

'Nuff said.


First, you'll also note that video out and audio line out are NOT part of the specification. Lightning is all-digital. (True.) The 30-pin adaptor and the Lightning to HDMI adaptor both contain chips and digital-analog converters in the ADAPTORS, not in the phone. Hence, your assertion that signaling in the cable would cause "sophisticated" circuitry in the phone to switch the lines to audio or video line outs is flat out wrong.

And you'll also note that Apple is, in fact, "killing off" the existing accessory market. Existing devices will use the adaptor or get tossed. Newer devices will use the new connector, or, as I also maintained, switch to Bluetooth and/or AirPlay. (True.) 

So... what did you nail, exactly? (grin)

You maintained that it would be a step down from the 30-pin connector and that it would be less sophisticated and less complex. As your post clearly indicates it's exact the opposite of what you stating as a guaranteed fact weeks ago.

Let's review...
  • The device watches for a momentary short on all pins (by the leading edge of the plug) to detect plug insertion/removal.
  • The pins on the plug are deactivated until after the plug is fully inserted, when a wake-up signal on one of the pins cues the chip inside the plug. This avoids any shorting hazard while the plug isn’t inside the connector.
  • The controller/driver chip tells the device what type it is, and for cases like the Lightning-to-USB cable whether a charger (that sends power) or a device (that needs power) is on the other end.
  • The device can then switch the other pins between the SoC’s data lines or the power circuitry, as needed in each case.
  • Once everything is properly set up, the controller/driver chip gets digital signals from the SoC and converts them – via serial/parallel, ADC/DAC, differential drivers or whatever – to whatever is needed by the interface on the other end of the adapter or cable. It could even re-encode these signals to some other format to use fewer wires, gain noise-immunity or whatever, and re-decode them on the other end; it’s all flexible. It could even convert to optical.

Predicted each and everyone of those as the likely method for the new cable to be reversible and have so few pins, for which you said would be silly and constantly stated it would be neither more sophisticated nor more complex.
Edited by SolipsismX - 9/25/12 at 9:55am

"The real haunted empire?  It's the New York Times." ~SockRolid

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

Reply

"The real haunted empire?  It's the New York Times." ~SockRolid

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

Reply
post #23 of 47
I wonder how long it will take for others to start using a reversible, adaptive connectors/cabling? If Apple spent 3 years working on new headphones (which are still painful albeit to a lesser degree) I wonder how long they worked on Lightening. Back in 2009/2010 I said that a new connector for the then rumoured Apple tablet would have been a great time to introduce it, and I think Apple would have had it been ready, but were they even working on it back then?


Quote:
Originally Posted by ahmlco View Post

One other thing I've not really seen mentioned, is that the Lightning port can also function as a USB host, not just as a client. This -- with the proper adaptor -- would allow cameras and other peripherals to be connected to an iPhone or iPad.

Boy, we sure have different definitions of the words less, complex and sophisticatd.

"The real haunted empire?  It's the New York Times." ~SockRolid

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

Reply

"The real haunted empire?  It's the New York Times." ~SockRolid

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

Reply
post #24 of 47
This could prove interesting. With dynamic routing of signals, the chips could communicate with the peripheral and deliver the protocol dependant upon the detected peripheral.

For example, if the external is a speaker - you automatically transmit audio. If the external peripheral is a video component, then some flavor of HDMI protocol is used; if the external peripheral is a keyboard - then perhaps a serial protocol, if a PC is detected, then USB2/3 protocol.

The present method of detecting the attached peripheral uses a resistive load, where the resistance to ground determines the peripheral that is attached. This is why you sometimes get the error message "Device not supported" - just clean the connectors up a bit, and it should work just fine.
post #25 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wovel View Post


Because USB ports are only allowed to be used as USB ports. You may recall Intel running into this problem when they wanted to use the USB port for Lightpeak (Thunderbolt).
I believe if Apple chose to use a Micro USB port, they would be restricted to protocols and configurations that are part of the Micro USB standard.

And there are several instances where the microUSB port has had issues with damage during the install/removal process.  The microUSB port is not a very rebust connection - hopefully this is all fixed with the new Apple cable.  Robust connection, and immune from many forms of damage (accidental or intentional) that has plauged many of the microUSB cellphones.

post #26 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hodar View Post

This could prove interesting. With dynamic routing of signals, the chips could communicate with the peripheral and deliver the protocol dependant upon the detected peripheral.
For example, if the external is a speaker - you automatically transmit audio. If the external peripheral is a video component, then some flavor of HDMI protocol is used; if the external peripheral is a keyboard - then perhaps a serial protocol, if a PC is detected, then USB2/3 protocol.
The present method of detecting the attached peripheral uses a resistive load, where the resistance to ground determines the peripheral that is attached. This is why you sometimes get the error message "Device not supported" - just clean the connectors up a bit, and it should work just fine.

You also get an unlimited number of potential protocols and devices you can potentially support unlike with the simple 30-pin connector. This is a major step forward for CE and I don't think most realize how big this will be in the coming years.

Apple said that a Lightening to HMDI (digital) and Lightening to VGA (analog) adapters will arrive within a few months.

"The real haunted empire?  It's the New York Times." ~SockRolid

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

Reply

"The real haunted empire?  It's the New York Times." ~SockRolid

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

Reply
post #27 of 47

Am I missing something here?

This plug *is* electrically reversible.  Straight up pin-to-pin reversible.  To make it more clear number the lower pins 8 to 1, so they would be numbered the same as the top when they are flipped over.  It's 1-1, 2-7 (7-2), 3-6 (6-3), 4-8 (8-4), 5-5.  Same coming and going.  Compare his picture to itself rotated 180 degrees.

post #28 of 47
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post

Apple said that a Lightening to HMDI (digital) and Lightening to VGA (analog) adapters will arrive within a few months.
Really? I had not read this, but I suppose this makes sense. Im sure new Camera Connection Kits are coming as well, when the new iPad is released. I was wondering about this since the pricey $29 & $39 adapters they are currently shipping do not handle any video. Will these be strictly single application adapters, or will they be offered as 30-pin adapters to work with existing docks and adapters?
post #29 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hodar View Post

This could prove interesting. With dynamic routing of signals, the chips could communicate with the peripheral and deliver the protocol dependant upon the detected peripheral. For example, if the external is a speaker - you automatically transmit audio. If the external peripheral is a video component, then some flavor of HDMI protocol is used; if the external peripheral is a keyboard - then perhaps a serial protocol, if a PC is detected, then USB2/3 protocol.

 

We've been told that Lightning is a digital-only cable and protocol. Any conversion to, say, line-out audio for a speaker, would happen in the cable or adaptor. The best example of this is the 30-pin adaptor which a D/AC chip in it in order to get the audio line out from the data stream.

post #30 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mac_128 View Post

Really? I had not read this, but I suppose this makes sense. Im sure new Camera Connection Kits are coming as well, when the new iPad is released. I was wondering about this since the pricey $29 & $39 adapters they are currently shipping do not handle any video. Will these be strictly single application adapters, or will they be offered as 30-pin adapters to work with existing docks and adapters?

The statement comes from The Verge but I have no reason to doubt them.

"The real haunted empire?  It's the New York Times." ~SockRolid

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

Reply

"The real haunted empire?  It's the New York Times." ~SockRolid

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

Reply
post #31 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by Droid View Post

Can someone explain how consumers benefit from authentication chips within cables?
Sure it's clever to switch the connections based on the way it's inserted but Apple could just make a 'mirrored connector' instead (same pin connections on each side).
It looks like it is just a way for Apple to prevent 3rd parties making cables, instead they have to sign up to Apple's licensing & manufacture to Apple's specs.

 

Apple has said that they plan to stick with this connector for a long time.  That means that it's probably going to have to support several different electrical interfaces over its lifetime.  At the least, I would expect USB3 and Thunderbolt in the near term.  To do that with a small number of pins means it's going to have to figure out which interface you're using and assign the pins accordingly.  The existing cable needs to configure the electrical interface for USB2.

 

I can think of several reasons to do the configuration with a chip in the cable.  My favorite would be for safety.  The chip in the middle protects the iDevice from high voltage spikes, current spikes, power wired to ground, etc.  It also protects the iDevice from seeing an inconsistent electrical interface: signaling one interface but using another.

 

You're probably also right, though, that Apple wants to exert some control over third party cables.  Forcing them to manufacture to Apple specs may save Apple headaches and money in support and service, as well as generating licensing fees.

post #32 of 47
Why did they not also remove the headphone jack. And drive the headphone audio signal through the lightening port if it can dynamically change what signals go through it?

Perhaps this would have enabled them to get the bigger screen into a handset that was not so tall.

Seeing as how they provide headphones they could have used a lightning connector instead
post #33 of 47
Originally Posted by WilliamWallace View Post
Why did they not also remove the headphone jack. 

 

Probably because that's a horrible idea.


Perhaps this would have enabled them to get the bigger screen into a handset that was not so tall.

 

The point of that being what?

Originally Posted by Marvin

The only thing more insecure than Android’s OS is its userbase.
Reply

Originally Posted by Marvin

The only thing more insecure than Android’s OS is its userbase.
Reply
post #34 of 47
Here is a more cogent breakdown of what I and others have been predicting...


Quote:
Originally Posted by WilliamWallace View Post

Why did they not also remove the headphone jack. And drive the headphone audio signal through the lightening port if it can dynamically change what signals go through it?
Perhaps this would have enabled them to get the bigger screen into a handset that was not so tall.
Seeing as how they provide headphones they could have used a lightning connector instead

There are plenty of reasons but the most glaring two I'd think would be 1) it's too costly to have such expensive headphones that don't increase the listening experience being included with every device, and 2) you couldn't use 3rd-party headphones until the licensing is under way, and even then it would be a use of proprietary connector that would be more cost to the user and hurt their ecosystem.

"The real haunted empire?  It's the New York Times." ~SockRolid

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

Reply

"The real haunted empire?  It's the New York Times." ~SockRolid

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

Reply
post #35 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post

Nailed it! I forget who was saying I was stupid for thinking Apple would use adaptive pins for this new connector. I doubt they'll speak up now.
I do wonder pins 2 and 7 (the power pins) are used for the association. You alter the impedance slightly or have the chip communicate over one or the other pin and the device's chip's will be able to know instantly which pins are for which orientation of the plug.
I feel as if the charging and syncing is faster with the new connector. I look forward to AnandTech's thorough review which should reveal this is it exists.
Because Lightening can act as dumb as Micro-USB is no argument that Lightening should have scraped, all its features be removed, and a far inferior connector be used.
I don't understand why you et al. purposely ignore the mandate on the EPS ruling. You know damn well it has nothing to do with the cabling but with the EPS. You also know damn well that Apple has been in compliance for 8 years with their EPS having a USB-A connector so that any vendor can use their EPS. Don't pretend you aren't aware of this.


There is another really good breakdown of Lightning on the Solipsism Gradient blog. Is that you, Mr. X? If so, kudos.

 

p.s. Didn't see your post above when I first posted. So it is you.

post #36 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by Droid View Post

 

 

I think your theory that cheap cables will just work for charging is misguided. Apple put these chips in to sense if cables are up to spec. I doubt they will allow charging from cables that don't do the required negotiation first. I hope I am wrong. 

 

You could very well be right.  But I hope you are wrong.  *fingers crossed* 

post #37 of 47
This is a cable/port design for a decade out: quite likely there are future uses this cable design allows for that necessitated the change.
post #38 of 47
Finally a reversible connector - all these years I have been been turning my phone around to get it to plug in correctly, makes it darn hard to use the phone when the touch screen is on the bottom. :-0
post #39 of 47
I have to say that I really appreciate the ability to blindly plug in the Lightning cable, but I'm going to hate not being able to get cheap 3rd party cables. Not so much for the cheap, but rather the custom. I have a ton of 30-pin cables, some are black because I want them hidden, some are very short, some are very long, and some have two heads.

The one thing about the cheap cables, was that it was easy to just pass them out. If someone needed one, you could just give it to them without worrying about getting it back. Heck, I would do this with cheap external batteries.


I hope this all kinds figured out soon.
post #40 of 47
@urbanvoyeur, this actually strengthens the argument that the authentication is going to be required for something even as simple as charging. Apple has openly stated that there is no requirement to ever connect an iphone to the computer (since syncing and backups and restores can be done wirelessly), the only purpose for the cable would indeed be for charging.
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: iPhone
  • Apple's Lightning port dynamically assigns pins to allow for reversible use
AppleInsider › Forums › Mobile › iPhone › Apple's Lightning port dynamically assigns pins to allow for reversible use