I Love the New Lightning Connector

Count me as someone who’s seen the light or Lightning in this case.

As Apple launches the iPhone 5, the new sync and charging connector goes from an often used but seldom considered aspect of Apple device design to a much maligned facet of the iPhone 5.

As the owner of more than a few 30-pin dock connector devices, like a dock on my nightstand, a speaker dock on my office desk and a car audio and charging cable I understand the angst. None of these accessories work with the iPhone 5 until the $29 Lightning adapter ships in October.

Before I plugged the Lightning connector into my iPhone 5 I hated the idea of a new dock connector. It seemed like nothing more than a money grab by Apple. Even with the iPhone 5 teardown findings, I think money was a motivator for Apple’s dock connector change, but it’s not the only motivation.

Despite the costly change, I love the new Lightning connector! It’s a great change!

iphone 5 lightning cable

Apple new Lightning cable compared to old 30-pin dock connector

The new Lightning cable connects to the iPhone easier than the 30-pin connector.

I learned the hard way just how much of a pain the 30-pin dock connector could be when I damaged the dock connector of my iPad because I tried to plug-in the 30-pin connector in complete dark. Apple exchanged my iPad for free under warranty, but it could have been an expensive error. The Genius Bar employee told me this was a common problem and I needed to pay more attention. I’m still nervous when I plug the dock connector into the iPad.

The new Lightning connector slides into the iPhone without a hitch and because it is reversible I don’t need to figure out which end is up late at night.

The change isn’t cheap. I will need to replace my accessories or buy adapters. I’m hoping someone will design an insert that lets me dock the iPhone 5 with my old 30-pin dock. Apple’s solution certainly adapts the two connectors, but I’m not confident that my phone will sit safely in a dock with their adapter. I want one that will not only bridge the two connectors but grasp the bottom of the iPhone. Apple used to include inserts that hold the bottom of the phone securely with earlier generation iPhones.