This is something that many have been discussing recently as the battle weighs on between Apple and the European Union (EU). The EU is trying to push for a universal standard that would require Apple to drop the Lightning port on its devices and replace it with the USB-C connection that everyone else uses. By doing this, they feel it will result in a universal balance between devices and accessories, preventing consumers from being trapped within a proprietary bubble of nonsense. Something that has plagued Apple products for many years.
Clearly, somebody high up within the EU was probably sick and tired of having to bounce between cables all of the time and vowed to turn it into a personal vendetta that many others were quick to add their name to. Then again, that is just my own personal theory. Likely, this is a battle that was born from high numbers of complaints from consumers that eventually led to someone taking action. I just like my theory better.
Regardless of what gave birth to it all, the two sides have been battling it out, with Apple fighting back claiming it would slow innovation within the industry. The EU doesn’t agree as they feel that the Lightning connection does not hold enough weight against the capabilities of USB-C to consider it to be innovative (especially, thanks to the new USB4). Explaining that things could change when a new potentially universal option is discovered that one-ups USB-C enough and allows for everyone to adopt it.
Meanwhile, Apple has already been moving in the direction of USB-C with a number of its devices, including within the iPad series. Take a look at the (2021) 12.9″ iPad Pro, which makes use of USB-C, for example. The flagship model didn’t adopt Lightning for a number of reasons, showing the power that USB-C has over the industry. So why not move everything else in the same direction. The act alone would be innovative since it would open support for so many products within the market without the need for an adapter (assuming an adapter would work or not to begin with).
It seems like the logical direction to take and would prevent Apple from continuing this endless punishment of proprietary connections. It would also prevent the amount of R&D and separate models companies need to invest in to let their products support Apple’s. For example, a speaker made by a company that has USB-C connectivity where the same company also may have an additional model dedicated just to Apple products with a Lightning dock built-in (creating a limited support product). Instead, the company could develop one speaker to support all of the mobile devices without the need for alternative models.
But what do you think? I would be interested in knowing how others feel about this. Do you prefer the proprietary bubble for whatever reasons? Did you enjoy the classic Apple dock connection on your devices that could no longer be used with anything else once Apple switched to Lightning? Which would likely happen again if the company continues to develop proprietary connections that don’t play with anyone else in the industry? Or maybe I am setting this up to be a biased question with my choice of words (I admit, I might be a little guilty there!). Do feel free to share your thoughts in the comments below.