Wednesday, August 08, 2012

iOS 6 string points to nine-pin, not 19-pin, iDevice dock connector

The iPhone 5 rumors continue to come in a steady stream, which - as usual - points to "something" happening soon. The latest rumor, spawned on Tuesday, concerns the new dock connector, which in and of itself was already a rumor.

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Earlier, TechCrunch said it "confirmed" that the new dock connector, which most believe is a done deal, would have 19 pins. Meanwhile, iLounge recently reported that the dock connector would only have 8 pins.

Naturally this new report agrees with neither of the prior ones. It does, however, agree with Apple's iOS 6 beta software, which has a reference to "copyDeviceSupports9Pin."

That reference seems to indicate that there is support for devices with a 9-pin dock connector in iOS 6. The string appears to have been in the beta software since iOS 6 beta 1.

Or course, this confirms nothing. It does come right after 9to5Mac said it was able to tweak the iOS 6 simulator to allow a 640 x 1,136 pixel resolution, which is precisely what has been claimed to be the resolution for the rumored new, elongated iPhone 5 screen.

The smaller dock connector rumor has been floating around for months, and is set to wreak havoc on third-party hardware vendors. While Apple is said to be providing an adapter, it is still difficult to see how this would work on a speaker dock, for example, where the device is supposed to sit flush.

Apple is expected to launch the device at a press event on Sept. 12, with the retail launch on Sept. 21. Along with the dock connector, among the rumors are LTE support, a quad-core processor, in-cell touch panels (which will mean a thinner screen), and elongated 4-inch screen with a 16:9 aspect ratio, a moved headset jack and a centered FaceTime camera.

In addition, Apple is expected to announce a number of other devices at that same event: an iPad mini with a 7.85-inch non-retina display, a new iPod nano, and a new iPod touch. One of the latest rumors is that the third-generation iPad would also get a refresh, so it can incorporate the new dock connector.

These dates and rumors seem pretty solid, but in the past "pretty solid" iPhone rumors have not panned out (witness the iPhone 4S, last year). Notably, the sheer volume of rumors means that even if Sept. 12 is not correct, the launch date of the iPhone 5 is rapidly approaching.

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