Just a little earlier this week we were thinking about USB cables, and specifically, ones that could be inserted into a device regardless of their orientation: double-sided connectors, just like Apple introduced with its Lightning cable a couple years back. That new USB interface will ultimately arrive as part of the USB 3.1 Type-C spec, but with the details only just now going official, it’s still going to be a while before we see anything like that on our phones. Now a new leak suggests that Apple could beat the rest of the industry to the punch, and may release a new Lightning cable for the iPhone 6 that would give it its own reversible USB connector.
Rather than going with an all-new layout, like we see with that Type-C connector, Apple appears to be trying to create a reversible USB plug that fits into existing Standard-A ports – there’s even a recently published Apple patent that describes just such a reversible connector.
The thing is, in order to get a system like this working with existing USB ports, the plug’s going to have to have a flexible contact in the middle – and Apple’s patent appears to describe a connector much along that line. One of the big selling points of Lightning was how it could help minimize wear (by nature of reducing the struggle to get a plug to fit), whereas this new system seems to almost be inviting increased wear – at least, on the connector end. Will the convenience factor cancel that out? Heck, are these even real pictures to begin with? Our answers may be just weeks away, with an Apple iPhone 6 event expected for early September.