A main talking point regarding the next iPhone has been the dock connector, with most people agreeing on a smaller one, made up of 19-pins. However, iLounge Editor Jeremy Horowitz has insisted that the new iPhone will have and 8-pin dock connector, defying all past rumours.
According to two sources, Apple’s new Dock Connector features only 8 pins, seemingly contradicting claims of “16-pin” and “19-pin” connectors. Although the original Dock Connector contained 30 pins, reports of 16- or 19-pin connectors seemed hard to square with the port’s small size and Apple’s actual need for additional pins beyond what USB/Micro-USB offer. No images or parts for the connector have leaked out, either. Both of our sources concur that there are eight pins in a line within the new Dock Connector, which may well receive a different name going forward….
One source claims that the new connector will feature other design innovations, potentially including the ability to be connected to docks and cables in either orientation (like MagSafe), but the other source could not confirm this or additional changes we’ve heard about…
It really is all speculation at the current point, but through only having 8 pins, many accessories would become completely useless.
Their source has also indicated that iOS6 will allow devices to connect to each other through Bluetooth 4, opening up new possibilities.
The feature would enable, say, a future iPod nano to display iMessages received by an iPhone, record voice memos that could be shared via the iPhone, and even initiate phone calls through its own headphones. It could also conceivably let you make iPhone calls from your iPad (or possibly even recent Macs), assuming the iPhone was paired with the computer over Bluetooth.
This feature could be of great benefit to the iPod Nano, whose functionality is currently very limited. If Apple does use this, it will make the Nano much more useful, provided that you have another iDevice in reach.
Update: In an update to their article, iLounge has now stated that the male connector will have 8 pins on both sides, whereas the female connector will have 8 on one side. Since the iPhone has the female port, it will be able to connect to either side of the maile plug, which hasn’t been possible for a while now.