Apple may launch an iPhone without a Lightning connector in 2021

Shawn Knight

TechSpot Staff
Staff member

The intelligence comes courtesy of a new research note from Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo. Kuo is regarded as one of the top Apple analysts in the industry and is well-connected among component suppliers.

In his note, Kuo said eliminating the port would create more differentiation between the highest-end and high-end models in Apple’s lineup. Presumably, doing away with the Lightning port may also allow Apple to make the phone more water resistant.

Apple is widely expected to launch an iPhone SE 2 in the first quarter of 2020 that’ll pack modern hardware in the shell of an iPhone 8. An iPhone SE 2 Plus with a full-screen design (no Face ID) may arrive in early 2021, setting the stage for a bi-annual iPhone release cycle not unlike what Samsung has with its Galaxy S and Galaxy Note lines.

The first iPhone SE arrived in early 2016 and was discontinued a little over two years later. With flagships now commanding upwards of $1,000, the time might be right for Apple to reintroduce a budget option. After all, not everyone wants or needs a high-end handset with all the bells and whistles.

Masthead credit: iPhone by Michael Gordon

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Squid Surprise

TS Evangelist
Hmmm.... not sure I like the sound of that.... are they bundling their wireless AirPods with the phone? And if so, is it costing north of $2,000??!?!?

 

Vrmithrax

TechSpot Paladin
So, no way to connect physical headphones when your AirPods die, no way to plug into your desktop for direct file transfer, no way to connect to AirPlay vehicles that don't support full functionality over bluetooth, no way to direct connect for troubleshooting, etc...

What could possibly go wrong?
 

Nobina

TS Evangelist
doing away with the Lightning port may also allow Apple to make the phone more water resistant.
Water-resistance is one of the least important features on a smartphone and sacrificing anything for it is ridiculous. I've never had a device die on me due to it getting a bit wet. Nor I can remember getting my devices wet, except the...you know.
the time might be right for Apple to reintroduce a budget option
Apple will never have a budget option that most people can afford. It's just gonna be a $700 "budget" phone, pretty much what flagships used to cost and some still do. It will, however, have a 720p screen for that price cause for that price it's impossible to go higher with Apple.
 

QuantumPhysics

TS Evangelist
I'm not surprised they'd be moving to a wireless, connector less phone.

My problem with that is whether or not wireless charging is truly fast enough to charge these phones as fast as a wired connection.

A wireless phone means more waterproofing, but my other issue is how would I move huge videos from the phone to my computer and how long would it take?
 

QuantumPhysics

TS Evangelist
Water-resistance is one of the least important features on a smartphone and sacrificing anything for it is ridiculous. I've never had a device die on me due to it getting a bit wet. Nor I can remember getting my devices wet, except the...you know.

Clearly, you've never accidentally dropped your phone in water - or had a child drop it in the toilet.

I appreciate my iPhone 7 Plus, X and XS Max having waterproofing - even at the expense of the headphone jack.

I was on vacation in Seychelles when my iPhone 6 Plus short circuited from beach water.

Now I can literally take videos UNDER water in 4K 60fps.
 
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bviktor

TS Addict
They just REALLY don't want to finally put a USB-C port on that stupid phone, do they. They rather just don't have a port at all. Friggin' hilarious.
 
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bviktor

TS Addict
So, no way to connect physical headphones when your AirPods die, no way to plug into your desktop for direct file transfer, no way to connect to AirPlay vehicles that don't support full functionality over bluetooth, no way to direct connect for troubleshooting, etc...

What could possibly go wrong?
When was the list time you plugged your phone into your PC for "direct file transfer"?
 

Cubi Dorf

TS Booster
Iphone 11 is not try to being budget phone. I am agree with you to being more water resist of not that important.

Water-resistance is one of the least important features on a smartphone and sacrificing anything for it is ridiculous. I've never had a device die on me due to it getting a bit wet. Nor I can remember getting my devices wet, except the...you know.

Apple will never have a budget option that most people can afford. It's just gonna be a $700 "budget" phone, pretty much what flagships used to cost and some still do. It will, however, have a 720p screen for that price cause for that price it's impossible to go higher with Apple.
 

Squid Surprise

TS Evangelist
And what did you transfer, and why would you bother instead of using cloud services for free?

And what makes you think WiFi transfer won't be sufficient? Like it's several hundred Mbps we're talking about.
Cloud services are only free for a few GB... then you need to pay... I have about 400gb of “stuff” (photos, music, apps, etc) on my iPhone and I back it up on my PC (which has its own backup system that is far more reliable for me)...
And while WiFi is pretty fast nowadays, it’s still not as fast as a wired connection.
Yes, I’m probably not a usual user - but a wireless only iPhone would be inconvenient.
 
Cloud services are only free for a few GB... then you need to pay... I have about 400gb of “stuff” (photos, music, apps, etc) on my iPhone and I back it up on my PC (which has its own backup system that is far more reliable for me)...
And while WiFi is pretty fast nowadays, it’s still not as fast as a wired connection.
Yes, I’m probably not a usual user - but a wireless only iPhone would be inconvenient.
all good reasons and aside from 'the cloud' requiring EULAs and privacy statements and mandatory adjudication in case 'the cloud' gets subverted by some country with major investing in AI and quantum computing research or just some low bid contractor dev or 'sales' showing off a new feature.
 

cliffordcooley

TS Redneck
Removing connectors as an excuse to water proof anything is all BS. The connectors can be water proofed. They only want to remove the connector.
 
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