As reported by an AppleInsider reader, some Apple Stores now appear to be increasing security measures regarding iOS devices through specialized anti-theft dock connectors. It has now been confirmed that this new type of dock connector is being utilized across a number of American Apple Stores.
Not every iDevice in the store has one of these new connectors. The more expensive third-gen iPad other products closer to the store’s entrance are the only devices that are currently using the connector.
It appears to be identical looking to the normal dock connector, with the only noticeable change being the lock symbol that replaces Apple’s original ‘line within a box’ illustration.
When attached to an iDevice, the cable physically locks in to the product’s metal chassis just as a normal dock connector, but the internals have been tweaked to prevent the unit from disengaging, essentially tethering the product to the display table.
It is currently unknown whether Apple will sell this anti-theft connector to any other retailers, or even if Apple is the one manufacturing it. It is possible that a third-party manufacturer has created this specialized connector for Apple, but if this was so, it would be likely that they would start selling it to other vendors, which has not happened as of yet.
It is unclear how exactly the connector is separated from the device, as there are not buttons or anything of the sort on the connector. Perhaps each store possesses a special tool in order to disconnect the connector from the device without causing any harm to it.