Apple should include a combo FireWire and USB 2.0 cable in every iPod box

With the latest iPods, Apple is no longer including a FireWire cable in the box. The music players will still work with FireWire, if a cord is purchased separately, but only a USB 2.0 cable comes with the device. What’s the problem, you ask? Well, Mac users who have machines that are less than a year or two old have Macs that do not have USB 2.0. They do have FireWire.

MDN reader “macnut222” has suggested an interesting solution to this issue in a thread to a related article:

What Apple should have done is put the FireWire+USB Combo cable in the iPod mini/photo’s box. It retails for $19 – the same price as the individual FW and USB cables. This way, Apple only has to provide one cable, but no one is left out.

Apple’s website features the cable:

Use an extra iPod Dock Connector to FireWire and USB 2.0 Cable for charging and syncing your iPod or iPod photo to your Mac or Windows PC. Compatible with iPod photo. Price – $19.00. The iPod Dock Connector to FireWire and USB 2.0 Cable offers up to 480Mbps data transfer for quickly loading an entire music library on iPod or iPod mini. Connect the FireWire cable up to the iPod or iPod mini power adapter to charge while syncing. Compatible with iPod with Click Wheel, iPod mini and iPod with Dock Connector.

MacDailyNews Take: Why isn’t this cable in the iPod boxes instead of just a USB 2.0 cable, Apple? You already have the cable. Are there margin issues? Does it cost a few pennies more per cable? Was this just an oversight, a tiny miscalculation? Wouldn’t this cable be a better solution for your Mac users? You do care about your Mac-using iPod owners, right, Apple?

If you want to switch iPod over to USB 2.0, that’s fine, but perhaps you should wait until the majority of Mac owners have realistically had a chance to acquire USB 2.0 capable Macs? After all, it was Apple that just recently started adding USB 2.0 to their Mac computer lines. We know Apple likes to move fast, but this “USB 2.0 included/pay if you want FireWire” move was made a bit too soon. Apple should put the combo cable in the boxes now and do the move to USB 2.0 only in 6-12 months, if that’s what they want to do. What could be the harm in that?

Related MacDailyNews articles:
Apple disrespects its own Mac users with iPod’s FireWire fiasco – February 24, 2005
Griffin debuts Dock400 FireWire cable for Apple iPods – February 24, 2005
Petition to Apple for iPod FireWire support posted online – February 23, 2005
Apple knifing its own FireWire baby by pushing USB 2.0 as iPod’s primary connectivity option – February 23, 2005


  1. So what!!!!! Big frickin’ deal. If you don’t want to spend the $20, buy last week’s less featureful more expensive version with the “free” cable. Sheesh!

    Gee, the Mac mini is “brilliant”, yet has no included keyboard, mouse, or monitor.

  2. Whatsamatta, zupchuck? Is MacDailyNews’ solution making too much sense for ya?

    This Apple combo cable is the perfect solution. Put it in the box Apple and we’ll shut up about it!

  3. I don’t like the combo cables. My dog has been known to chaw on loose cabling. Besides, someone is likely to plug both of them in and wonder why nothing is working. More tech support headaches for Apple I would imagine.

  4. Stop beating a dead horse. FireWire has no advantages for the average Joe/Jo iPod user. Power users are going to spend the $19 to get the better Apple FireWire cable, or a cable of the choosing anyway!

Reader Feedback

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.