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Is Thunderbolt the next iDevice “Dock” connection?

Thunderbolt port. Credit: Mac 4 Ever

Thunderbolt port. Credit: Mac 4 Ever

Rumors have been circulating for the last few weeks that Apple would add a Lightpeak port to the next iPad, with most people dismissing the idea as being too soon or just plain unnecessary.

However, given the newly revealed Thunderbolt connection that will debut on the next Macbook Pro, due out sometime soon, is it possible Apple plans to use it as a replacement for the Dock connector found on every iPhone and iPad?

If it sounds like overkill, consider the following:

At various times in the past and even in current iDevices, the Dock connector has been used for

  • Connecting to something via USB to sync and charge
  • Connecting to something via Firewire to sync and charge
  • Connecting peripheral USB devices using the Camera Connection kit
  • Output of composite video
  • Output of component video
  • Output of a VGA signal (using the VGA adapter for the iPad)
  • External control of music playback using the Apple Accessory Protocol
  • Connection to 3rd party peripherals
  • Output of a line level audio signal

Quite a list of jobs for a tiny connector on a portable device, no? Read more

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Posted in Apple Hardware | Also tagged , , , | 7 Responses