Monday, September 24, 2012

iPhone 5 Lightning-to-microUSB adapters, sold only in Europe, appear on eBay

We knew it would happen, and it has. Lightning to microUSB adapters have shown up on eBay. These adapters are otherwise only sold in Europe, due to regulations requiring that all mobile devices available in Europe be compatible with the microUSB interface standard.

Apple's iPhone 5, the first iDevice to ship with the new Lightning adapter, hit retail stores on Friday.

Apple was given an earlier waiver to allow it to continue to use its past 30-pin interface, and now it has been given a similar waiver for its Lightning dock connector. The waiver requires Apple to ship a microUSB adapter for its connector.

These are, in fact, official Apple adapters, or at least they are advertised as such. They receive quite a premium price, though. They are normally priced at £15.00 in the U.K. Apple Store, which amounts to $24.37 at the time of this writing. The eBay item is priced at double that, or $49.

Of course, if users wait long enough, they might actually see clone adapters, which would be considerably cheaper than Apple's price.  Clone Lightning to 30-pin adapters (as opposed to microUSB adapters) are available for pre-order at One is as low as $5.98, although most are around $15, which is still about half of Apple's $29 price for the official adapter.

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