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Apple Designing Thinner Thunderbolt Connector for iPad, iPhone

Redesigned, thinner Thunderbolt port.jpgAccording to a patent filing discovered by AppleInsider, Apple has plans for thinner Thunderbolt and USB connections, likely for use on ever-slimming hardware such as the MacBook Air, iPhone and iPad.

The application entitled “Super-Thin USB Connector Receptacle Housings having Reduced-Wear Finger Contacts” illustrates methods to reduce the size, improve design aesthetics, and create a “snap or feel” when a cable is inserted into the port. Although the application title would imply the redesign is only for USB, Apple indicated the design are applicable to USB, FireWire, and DisplayPort. AppleInsider notes that the accompanying illustrations show a Mini DisplayPort, the same form-factor Apple uses for Thunderbolt.

Imagine a Thunderbolt-equipped iPhone or iPad. It would take mere seconds to sync and backup your device to iTunes as opposed to the countless minutes with the current 30-pin USB 2.0 connector.

Will we see this in the next iPhone? It certainly would help Apple sell more Thunderbolt-equipped iMacs, MacBook Pros and forthcoming MacBook Airs.

via AppleInsider

  1. TBD says:

    That’s cool because otherwise I was afraid that iPhone / iPad would be thicker just because they put a Thunderbolt port over there. The devices should get the Thunderbolt port *and* get thinner.

    And that would be pretty cool because I’m sick of waiting too long with that white cable connected to my computer. Hm.

    1. Anonymous says:

      I think the only problem they might run into is backwards compatibility with the entire accessory infrastructure built around the 30-pin dock connector.

    2. @TTunco:disqus @twitter-49015982:disqus @dougmcarthur:disqus Apple has never been a company to hold on on to old technologies. Eventually they will have to ditch the 30-pin connector and this is the perfect opportunity to do so. Besides, something like the MiniDisplay Port/Thunderbolt connector is non-proprietary and will eventually be widespread since it has the backing of Intel.

  2. now this would be awesome…

  3. Metaksan says:

    Cool solution.

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