Engineer mods Android phone to create the first one featuring a Lightning port

jsilva

Posts: 325   +2
In context: The Lightning interface is a proprietary data transfer and charging port exclusive to Apple devices since the iPhone 5. However, that didn't stop a robotics engineer from adding a Lightning connector to an Android phone in a 'just because I can' project.

Late last year, a robotics engineer named Ken Pillonel (Kenny Pi) showed us the first iPhone with a working USB-C port. This year he decided to invert this idea and modded an Android phone with a Lightning port.

For now, Pillonel only posted a small teaser showing the interface working on the modded phone (Samsung Galaxy A51), but a full video explanation will be available later. Still, the teaser shows you the phone charging using a Lightning cable and detecting it to transfer data.

"It was a complex modification that required some out-of-the-box thinking. And sprinkle some DIY on top of that," wrote the engineer in the video description.

When asked about how he did it, Pillonel said that the most challenging part of the project was putting all of it together. As per his words, Lightning cables are not "dumb." They only charge Apple devices, forcing the engineer to think about how he could trick the line into thinking it was connected to one. All this had to be done inside the phone's casing, making it even more complicated.

As you can see by the video, Pillonel found a way to do just that. Overall, he considered this project more manageable than the previous one, as he now has more experience and knowledge in this field. Pillonel also added that there's no reason for modding an Android device with a Lightning port, but he wanted to see if he could do it.

Permalink to story.

 

QuantumPhysics

Posts: 6,308   +7,247
Lightning cables mean extra profitability for Apple. There's been plenty of Youtube clickbait claiming Apple would abandon Lightning - I never believed any of it. I personally think USB-C is a better connector.
 

y6Tq2RGXEejb

Posts: 48   +67
Lightning cables mean extra profitability for Apple. There's been plenty of Youtube clickbait claiming Apple would abandon Lightning - I never believed any of it. I personally think USB-C is a better connector.
USB-C only exists because Lightning is patented and closed down by Apple. USB-C has to work completely backwards to skirt around the patent - the Lightning port is essentially embedded into the USB-C cable while the Lightning cable is embedded into the USB-C port. It's pretty sub-optimal but there's nothing we can do because Apple will always be Apple.
But Lightning is technically a nicer, more robust, straightforward, and more securely fitted connector. Unfortunately.
 

toooooot

Posts: 1,509   +753
Lightning cables mean extra profitability for Apple. There's been plenty of Youtube clickbait claiming Apple would abandon Lightning - I never believed any of it. I personally think USB-C is a better connector.
Isnt Europe trying to force Apple to use usb c, at least on products sold in Europe?
Personally, I already have devices that are all different, SDXC, DP, HDMI, HDMI mini, USB 2, 3, USB c, other smaller USB. Not to mention 3 or 4 converters for using all of my products.
One small port that has it all would be a great invention. And I approve more companies choosing USB-c. Also, I recommend docking stations which have multiple connectors from webstores. Priced 15-100, they offer most if not all types of connectors. They are super handy and better than storing multiple converters which I always lose.
 

Sausagemeat

Posts: 1,597   +1,422
I would prefer my iPhone and AirPods have USB C as that would match all my other tech and I could use the same cables for all. But I do think the lightning connector is better/more robust.
 

timljh

Posts: 43   +6
USB-C only exists because Lightning is patented and closed down by Apple. USB-C has to work completely backwards to skirt around the patent - the Lightning port is essentially embedded into the USB-C cable while the Lightning cable is embedded into the USB-C port. It's pretty sub-optimal but there's nothing we can do because Apple will always be Apple.
But Lightning is technically a nicer, more robust, straightforward, and more securely fitted connector. Unfortunately.
If that is true, why did Apple switch to USB-C for their iPads and Macs?
 

PEnnn

Posts: 774   +879
I am not sure if I'd see a benefit to USB-C etc...and I am neutral on this issue

After all, all IPhone Lightning cables (as far I know, but mine are) have a Lightning port on one end and a USB on the other.So, connecting to anything is not an issue.

Fine print: Your mileage may vary.
 

bandit8623

Posts: 387   +215
USB-C only exists because Lightning is patented and closed down by Apple. USB-C has to work completely backwards to skirt around the patent - the Lightning port is essentially embedded into the USB-C cable while the Lightning cable is embedded into the USB-C port. It's pretty sub-optimal but there's nothing we can do because Apple will always be Apple.
But Lightning is technically a nicer, more robust, straightforward, and more securely fitted connector. Unfortunately.
not correct at all. usbc was created because people were having a hard time with mini usb and micro usb having to be connected in 1 direction.
mini usb was created in 2000. the lightning connector was created in 2012.

the lightning connector still runs at usb 2.0 speeds. why would anyone copy that