Apple has cut the price of the USB-C to Lightning cable, a key accessory for the iPhone that adds fuel to the fire of rumors that the company’s next smartphone will offer an upgraded charging package offering faster charge speeds. Apple websites show the price of the one-meter cable has dropped by $6, from $25 to $19.
The change, which appeared to take place last month as was spotted by 9to5Mac on Monday, also appears to show a new part number of MQGJ2AM, compared to the previous number of MK0X2AM. The change comes after rumors earlier this month that Apple plans to swap the standard USB charger bundled with every iPhone in favor of a plug with a USB-C attachment, enabling faster recharge speeds. While iPhones today come with a 5-watt power block that charges a phone in two-and-a-half hours, the rumored 18-watt USB-C plug would charge a phone to 80 percent capacity in an hour.
The change of price seems a small discount, but it means the cable costs the same as the standard one-meter USB to Lightning cable. That means users won’t have to pay more to replace the cable that potentially comes bundled with this year’s model. It also means that owners of Apple’s newest MacBook and MacBook Pro laptops, which only offer USB-C ports, won’t have to fork out for a new cable or use an adaptor to connect the phone. If Apple is going to change the charging cable, a price reduction to match the current cable makes perfect sense.
Those hoping Apple may also put a USB-C port on the phone itself, enabling a broader range of components, are set to be disappointed. Rumors point to Apple keeping the Lightning port first introduced with the iPhone 5 in 2012, which replaced the 30-pin iPod dock connector with a smaller, reversible plug. It’s unlikely the company will want to change charging ports again soon, even if it would prove beneficial: Apple received criticism for making 30-pin accessories obsolete when it switched to Lightning.
All eyes are on the Worldwide Developers Conference, set for June 4, where Apple is expected to unveil iOS 12 and give developers a glimpse at where the platform is headed.
Keep an eye out for any hints of future phone functionality.