Apple may be about to change the iPhone’s charging port. According to a Bloomberg report, the company is testing new iPhones and adapters with USB-C, which is what MacBooks and iPads already use, not to mention a plethora of devices outside the Apple ecosystem. We’ve reached out to Apple for confirmation and have yet to receive a response.
Bloomberg’s sources said that the adapter being tested may “let future iPhones work with accessories designed for the current Lightning connector.” That could mean a Lightning-to-USB-C adapter for things like credit card scanners or flash drives that plug into existing iPhones. Bloomberg‘s report noted that if Apple “proceeds with the change, it wouldn’t occur until 2023 at the earliest.”
While Apple’s decisions to change ports have been the subject of many jokes in popular culture, a move to USB-C may actually be welcome. The more widely available standard is only slightly bigger than Lightning, but can deliver power and data more quickly. The change could also make life much easier for those who already use USB-C to charge most of their devices and still have to carry a Lightning cable with them just for their iPhones.
Apple’s motivations for the potential change may not be completely altruistic. The EU has been pushing for a universal phone charging standard for years, and recently proposed legislation that would make USB-C the mandated port for all handsets. Testing USB-C on iPhones would just be Apple recognizing the writing on the wall. If this does come to pass, though, it would not only be convenient for most people who are already largely using USB-C, but could also mean less e-waste in the future.