New iPhone might not work on old plugs

(WPRI) – Apple iPhone and iPod users could be facing a jarring change when they buy the newest devices — one that could even frustrate die-hard fans.

Since 2003, Apple has been using a 30-pin connector on iPods and then iPhones, different from other cell phone and music player chargers and transfer cables. now, there’s talk the iPhone 5 could be sporting a smaller 19-pin connector once it’s released.

The earphone jack is moving to the bottom, sources have told Reuters.

“Apple is a company that is always looking forward. They’ve always been willing to break from old things, whether it’s hardware or software, they have to move on,” said Larry Magid, a technology analyst for CBS. “At some point they had to move on from that 30 pin connector.

“It’s going to annoy people,” he said.

After the 30-pin connector got ubiquitous in Apple Stores and kiosks, eventually after-market, off-label chargers and transfer cables at cut prices showed up. In other cases, components or appliances for cars and homes used that 30-pin connector to let you play and control your iPod through your home or car stereo system.

Now, the 30-pin connector is all over the lives of some Apple fans, and all those connectors will likely have to be replaced, or special adaptors ordered — either way, it’s expensive consequences. Buy a whole new whole-house radio with the 19 pin connector? a new car adapter?

“It’s a bad thing!” said Apple user Amir Esagl. “You invest a lot of money in these products and you want to use them. I would discourage Apple from doing that!”

“Some people aren’t as tech savvy — I know my parents will have a hard time making the switch,” said Kane Angll. But: “I’m sure over time everyone will get used to it.”

Muddled by micro

Those whose cell phones are not an iPhone could now be chuckling once again. most Android phones and BlackBerrys use a micro-USB connector for charging and communication, after the European Union made a strong request in 2009 to several manufacturers to make things uniform — to pick one common charger and stick with it. Micro-USB chargers and transfer cables can also be found cheaply at some retailers. Apple did start making a micro-USB-to-30-pin adaptor last fall, but an official version isn’t available at the Apple Store in the U.S.

New iPhone might not work on old plugs

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