Could the next iPhone come with USB-C?

Posted Mar 2, 2017 by James Walker
Apple may be planning to replace its proprietary Lightning socket with a USB-C port on the upcoming iPhone 8. According to a major report, the company could change the connector and bundle new cables in the box. However, a key analyst disagrees.
iPhone 6
iPhone 6
Oliur Rahman
Apple is planning to fit the iPhone 8 with a curved display and a "USB-C port for the power cord and other peripheral devices," The Wall Street Journal reported this week. The detailed article claimed Apple will effectively abandon its Lightning connector. Instead, it will adopt the open USB-C specification already endorsed by many Android phone manufacturers.
The move, if confirmed, would allow the iPhone to have greater interoperability with third-party hardware ecosystems. However, it could also frustrate users who already own Lightning accessories, forcing them to buy new adapters and converters. This may not be received favourably by people who had to buy new products when Lightning itself was introduced.
However, the WSJ's report doesn't entirely align with previous rumours of the iPhone 8's features. Today, respected KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo told MacRumors Apple will not discontinue the Lightning port, putting the USB-C rumours to rest. According to Kuo, Apple is actually using Type-C Power Delivery tech to enable fast charging, a feature available on Android devices for years.
In essence, Apple will expand on the specification of its Lightning port to implement the power delivery aspect of USB Type-C. The port itself will remain in-place though, allowing customers to continue using the same cables and connectors. Apple will be able to keep iPhone buyers locked inside its ecosystem while incorporating one of USB-C's major features.
Kuo also suggested that the larger OLED version of the next iPhone may have a faster charging speed than its smaller siblings. Apple will use a "2-cell L-shaped" battery pack to enable more efficient charging than the flat cells commonly found in phones. The company plans to regulate the iPhone 8's power delivery systems using chips from Cypress and TI.
Apple is expected to unveil its 2017 iPhone line-up during its usual September launch window. Three phones are thought to be in development using 4.7-inch, 5.5-inch and 5.8-inch form factors. Only the latter version will feature the anticipated OLED display.
Apple may also add radical new features, such as a face-scanning laser sensor, unique "function area" secondary display and potential augmented reality capabilities. The company is aiming to create a stand-out line-up for 2017 that's a fitting celebration of ten years of the iPhone.
Some analysts have suggested the new design and added functionality could lead to record-breaking sales, although this claim has been contested by other industry experts. The combination of an aging iPhone range and the "all-new" nature of the iPhone 8 could be enough to sway buyers this holiday season. Apple will start mass production of the phone earlier than usual, increasing its launch-day stock.