Why Apple Did Not Choose Micro-USB for iPhone 5


Rainer Brockerhoff explains:

People keep asking why Apple didn’t opt for the micro-USB connector. The answer is simple: that connector isn’t smart enough. It has only 5 pins: +5V, Ground, 2 digital data pins, and a sense pin, so most of the dock connector functions wouldn’t work – only charging and syncing would. Also, the pins are so small that no current plug/connector manufacturer allows the 2A needed for iPad charging. Note that this refers to individual pins; I’ve been told that several devices manage to get around this by some trick or other, but I couldn’t find any standard for doing so.

There’s also an explanation about the Lightning to 30-pin adapter’s size and cost too–find out here.

[via The Loop].


  • nosnoop

    The only essential functions we need for the cable is syncing, charging and video/audio out.
    And these can ALL be done by micro-USB! Need other controls or other functions? You can use Bluetooth for that.

    The only reason for Apple not using micro USB is that they want control & profit.
    Proprietary connector design gives Apple total control, and they make fat profit from these accessories ($35 for an adapter???).

    Apple could have easily gone with micro-USB.
    But that would be so un-Apple.

  • MicroUSB would not charge the iPad.

  • Edge

    I understand that (well, I’ll take your word at it, lol), but then I have the question: Why can all other tablets charge from micro-USB?

  • hylowyoh

    BTW, I’m totally okay with Apple making profit! My stock holdings have grown exponentially and the dividend is now icing on the cake! Upgrading my phone each year hasn’t really “cost” me anything. :p

  • Zapperman

    Yeah pull this leg and it plays jingle bells. This is such a pile of rubbish it’s shameful. It’s naive to think that Apple couldn’t make micro USB work. This connector decision is my top reason for Not upgrading, but the painful part to admit (which Apple knows), is that eventually I will. Next model though.

  • Josh

    Wah Wah boo hoo. Everyone always finds something to complains about. Just shut up! You don’t like it, don’t buy apple products. And dont hang out on forums for apple products. Plain and simple.

  • blacks329

    The power draw of the iPad is quite a bit higher than other tablets (also most other tablets are smaller form factor, with lower power draws)

    The original iPad wouldn’t even charge from a computer USB port, b/c it would provide insufficient power. And even now on my iPad 3rd gen, if I do something graphic intensive, it’ll still lose battery while plugged in! It’s hilarious!!

  • ChristieNooks

    This article is such BS.

    Yes obviously previous apple products wouldn’t work with a micro USB but thats simply because they weren’t designed to. Which is NOT the same as couldn’t have been or couldn’t be designed to.

  • nosnoop

    Hi Gary:

    Most people got this wrong. Of course, it would charge the iPad.
    Otherwise, how can you charge the iPad using your USB 2.0 port?

    When connected using standard USB port to your PC, your iPad would display “Not Charging” when the screen is on. But once your iPad is locked and the screen is off, it would start to charge.

    So USB or micro USB would definitely charge the iPad – it just takes longer!
    Only “Fast Charging” is not supported without the 2A wall charger.

  • Edge


  • Etdashou

    1. “Why Apple Did Not Choose to -improve- or -understand more- Micro-USB for iPhone 5”

    2. ???

    3. Profit.

    My god.
    That is all their is to say here.

    How paying a cable 30 35$ + adapters + other stuff is actually helping the customer and not for the cash.