Will Apple ever unify charging connectors for iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch, and Mac? Lightning, USB-C, MagSafe for iPhone, MagSafe for Apple Watch, MagSafe for Mac – that’s a lot of different cables to carry for travelers!
Let me break down Apple’s different connectors and you’ll see how confusing this is:
• Lightning: Apple uses Lightning as the connector for all of its iPhones, the entry-level iPad, the iPad mini (but not the iPad Air or iPad Pro), iPod touch, and accessories like the Apple TV remote, MagSafe Duo and Battery Pack, all AirPods products and cases, and keyboards, mice and trackpads.
• USB-C: Apple uses USB-C for the charger on the current MacBook Pro, MacBook Air, iPad Pro and iPad Air.
• MagSafe for iPhone: Apple launched its large puck-shaped MagSafe charger for the iPhone 12 line last year.
• MagSafe for Apple Watch: The Apple Watch has used the same MagSafe charger since the first model in 2015.
• MagSafe for Mac: MagSafe started its Mac comeback earlier this year with a new round connector on the revamped 24-inch iMac. Expect another MagSafe design to make its way to the new MacBook Pro this year and a redesigned MacBook Air next year.
I believe Apple should shake up its connector lineup and slim down from five different chargers to as few as three. That would go a long way toward simplicity and better management of multiple Apple products. That should start with transitioning from Lightning to USB-C.
MacDailyNews Take: AirPods, Apple Remotes, Magic Keyboards, Magic Mice, and Magic Trackpads – they all charge with Lightning, so if Apple is going to move to USB-C, we’re going to need a lot of female lighting to male USB-C adapters!
We heard the outcry when Apple dumped the 30-pin connector for Lightning, so expect more rending of garments if Apple does it again.
That said, we do agree that it’s a mess, there are a lot of different cables/connectors to carry when on the go, and Apple should try to unify charging connectors as best they can.