A number of mockups and purported prototypes of the next-generation iPhone have surfaced lately, each with a smaller dock connector that allows room for larger speaker grills on the bottom of the iPhone. While talk of a smaller dock connector is purely speculative, a new report from TechCrunch allegedly confirms that Apple will indeed utilize the so-called “mini” dock connector in the new iPhone. The new dock connector will be a 19-pin port, which is substantially smaller than the current 30-pin dock connector found on every iPhone, iPod touch or iPad released in the past five years.
The report suggests that the new dock connector will be similar to the Thunderbolt ports found on various MacBook models, but it will have a different pin design. It could be speculated that perhaps Apple is moving towards implementing Thunderbolt or USB 3.0 technology on the iPhone for faster data transfer, but there are no reports to confirm that idea yet. In the meantime, iPhone accessory makers will anxiously await what Apple plans to do with its dock connector, as it will require these companies to overhaul their entire iPhone accessory lineup to cater to the change in design.