If you are using an iPhone or any Apple handheld device, you are quite aware of the Lightning connector that is used for connecting these devices to the computer and charger socket. It was developed by Apple to create a compact and thin connector type to support its slim design trend for all its iPhones, iPad, and many other accessories.
It is a popular connector type due to the numerous attributes it has on offer, and it is one of those connectors that stood the taste of time. But the only drawback is that you can’t use it with other devices without an adapter.
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A Lightning connector is a proprietary connector type developed by Apple Inc, which was introduced in the year 2012. It was first made available in the market with iPhone 5, iPods, and later with iPad 4.
Basically, this connector comes with a reversible 8-pin configuration, meaning it can be inserted in any orientation, and you won’t have to worry about which way it is facing. It made a revolution in the industry because it introduced a modern communication bus that would allow data transfer in both ways and also assist in power delivery.
Apple designed it in such a way that through the Lightning connector, you can transfer photos and videos to the computer and also charge the phone at the same time. Every cable comes with a Lightning connector on one end and a USB Type-A connector on the other end.
However, the modern Lightning connector cable also comes with a USB-C option on the other end. It was an effort by Apple to create an efficient connector type that could replace the old 30-pin connector and also help them in creating slim designs.
This connector is 80% smaller than the previous 30-pin connector and can be used as a multifunctional connector. Although the Lightning connector doesn’t offer any backward compatibility to old connector types, with an adapter, you can connect to old Apple devices.
The Lightning connector plug comes loaded with a processor chip that ensures not only an efficient use of the connector but also makes sure the portable Apple device is only connected to Apple-certified products.
Usage of Lightning Connector
The Lightning connector in Apple handheld devices like iPhone and iPad is mainly used for charging the device and also establishing communication with the computer. In general, all iPhones and iPads come with Lightning cables, and they can be connected to a connector plug to charge the devices. Besides using a connector plug in the power socket, you can just use the Lightning cable to connect to the PC or laptop to charge the device.
Besides delivering power, you can use the Lightning connector of your iPhone or iPad to send or receive data when it is connected to your PC or laptop. Whether you want to send or receive photos, files, videos, or movies, you can do anything you want, but you will have to use iTunes to establish data communication. The iPhone or iPod can’t upload or download data from the computer through any other medium.
In 2016, Apple gave up the use of a 3.5mm earphone jack in its smartphones as the Lightning connector is also capable of transmitting audio signals. You just have to use a Lightning to headphone adapter to listen to music from your iPhone to your headphone.
You can also use the Lightning connector to connect your iPhone to the car infotainment system through the wire.
Compatibility of Lightning Connector
Since its release in 2012 with iPhone 5, the Lightning connector has come a long way, and nowadays, it is found in many Apple devices and peripheral devices. Whether it is iPhone 13, iPad Air, Magic Keyboard, or mouse, Apple has created an extensive compatibility list with the Lightning connector.
Accessories like Trackpad and Pencil also come equipped with Lightning ports. Since a large part of Apple’s ecosystem of devices revolves around the Lightning connector, future products will still be compatible with this connector type.
Different Type Lightning Connector Cables
The Lightning connector of Apple may only be compatible with Apple devices, but there are certain connector cables that can help you to connect to other non-Apple devices. Let’s check out these Lightning connector cables;
Lightning To USB Connector Cable
It is a popular Lightning cable type that comes very useful for connecting your iPhone or other devices to any USB device. It is a highly useful Lightning cable type that offers you multiple functions.
The USB connector side comes in three variants which are USB-C, micro USB, and USB Type A, and you can use them to connect varied types of devices.
Lightning To Headphone Connector Cable
This cable type is mainly used for connecting your iPhone and iPad to wired headphones and speakers. This cable gets a Lightning connector on one end and a 3.5mm audio jack on the other end. You can use this cable to connect the phone to the car’s speaker system.
Lightning To HDMI Connector Cable
The need for screen-sharing for both entertainment and presentation purposes through your iPhone can be done using this Lightning cable type.
You will just need an HDMI-compatible TV or projector; you can easily share your iPhone or iPad screen on the large screen. The display won’t require any additional smart capabilities.
Lightning To VGA Connector Cable
It is a useful Lightning connector cable that allows you to connect an iPhone or iPad to an old monitor and projector running on VGA. However, it can only handle video, and no audio will be produced. It is mostly useful when you want to give a presentation or play games on a large screen.
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The Lightning cable from Apple is still a revolutionary innovation that is still being widely used by Apple devices and peripherals.
The Lightning connector is highly compact, and it has helped Apple to come up with compact devices year after year. Although there is a rumour that Apple is going to remove it in the near future, the ecosystem they have built around it will take time to replace.