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I do appreciate that (and I'm saying this because I want to be polite not because I truly believe it) Appleinsider tries to cover critical news both if they are
positive or negative but I'm wondering should they change their name to Appleoutsider.
In all honesty, this is just tabloid level. I'm wondering what kind of impact "news" like this have if they are brought forward via a "fan forum". AI, you're not doing anything good for Apple (and us).
And yes, I clicked. But more of this and AI is past (and I'm actually a paying subscriber to their app) for me.
I can't say much (negative) about the robustness of the lightning port, but lightning cables? Oh no. I had my fair share of trouble. Especially in humid environments the gold contacts just disappear, and no lightning cable, although optically in best condition except the plug, lasted longer than 2 years I would think. I had one notable exception which I use since 2014 or so, an aftermarket, very short (6") lightning cable that is used very rarely and still works although it starts failing in one orientation.
Third party (I guess some unlicensed) would stop working faster than original ones. I remember also going to the HK IFC Mall Apple Store with my collection of "burnt contact" lightning cables and they would just hand out replacements after verifying those were originals -with no other questions asked. (they replaced with unpackaged, loose cables). It is a known fact in parts of the world that the lightning plug doesn't age very well.
Now, the USB-C doesn't have the contacts exposed, so you're not touching it with your fingers and it's not getting damage from other, possibly sharp, objects in your backpack.
Because the USB-C has the contacts hidden, I see it as far superior. It is sadly bigger, and the presence of a tongue as others have mentioned make it possible for the port itself to be damaged where the lighting port has so far been very resistent to damage.
I still have had no damage to USB-C cables or ports though and I had lots of damage to lightning cables - in all fairness I use lightning cables longer than USB-C but I did jump on the USB-C MacBook Pro bandwagon from day one - I have some experience. I also have upgrade to USB-C where I can and finally have to say that I was not intending to upgrade to this year's iPhone but if it changes to USB-C that alone would be reason for me.
Just have to add that there is a learning curve on how to dock it back with the cable attached but after a while it works every time. Now it would be perfect if the cable would wind itself up inside a (bigger) base stand but that would add bulk to it.
My only (minor) quirks is that it doesn’t look clean by whipping the cable back to get it out of the way before docking.
But I’d easily give it 5/5