Why this issues, and what might be the benefits?

Key Takeaways

  • The upcoming iPhone 15 series is expected to feature a USB-C port instead of the Lightning port, allowing for faster data transfer speeds of 5-10Gbps or even up to 40Gbps with Thunderbolt support.
  • Thunderbolt support would benefit creators and professionals, allowing for faster editing and file transferring capabilities on the iPhone. It would also enable faster charging speeds, although concerns about overheating need to be addressed.
  • While Thunderbolt support is more likely to be seen on the iPhone 15 Pro and iPhone 15 Pro Max flagships, the traditional iPhone 15 or iPhone 15 Plus devices may still offer normal USB-C transfer speeds.

Apple is expected to launch the iPhone 15 series next month, in September, and by now, most sources and leaks have confirmed that the next-generation smartphones will all be equipped with a USB-C port and finally retire the aging Lightning port. As we all know at this point, USB-C is a modern standard, reversible, and immensely versatile. However, not all USB-C ports are created equal, and there are many differences between different versions.

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USB-C ports became the standard many years ago, and Apple started adapting the port first on its computers, such as the MacBook Pro laptops and Mac computers, and later on the iPads. As it stands, all Apple computers and all modern and recent iPads come with USB-C ports by default, and the latest 11-inch and 12.0-inch iPad Pro models even support Thunderbolt 4.

According to ChargerLAB and a few newly revealed photos of the USB-C port and components, the port might have an additional chip that could potentially add support for the Thunderbolt standard, supporting up to 40Gbps transfer speeds. The chip would be useful for transferring data, backing up the devices, and potentially even supporting faster charging speeds. However, knowing Apple, this will likely be limited to prevent overheating and rapid battery degradation.

The USB-C port with Thunderbolt support would provide significantly faster speeds than the lightning port. For instance, the lightning port was based on USB 2.0, which was capable of transferring up to 480Mbps. This was a great speed back in 2012, but it’s nowhere near the 5-10Gbps speeds of USB-C connectors, or the 40Gbps that Thunderbolt is capable of transmitting.

There are far more benefits, and there’s a chance we could see it on the upcoming iPhone 15 Pro and iPhone 15 Pro Max flagships. Thunderbolt support is unlikely to be seen on the traditional iPhone 15 or the iPhone 15 Plus devices, and we’d expect normal USB-C transfer speeds on those smartphones.

What are the advantages of Thunderbolt on iPhone?

As we said before, there are a lot of benefits to using a Thunderbolt-supported connector. If Apple does indeed bring support for the iPhone 15 Pro series, we can expect creators and professionals to make even more content on the iPhone. With the announcement of Final Cut Pro and Logic Pro, Apple changed the game. These two professional apps are already used by many in the field, helping them make the most out of the Apple M-chip-powered iPads. The port would also help iPhone users edit faster, and transfer large files within seconds and minutes.

If the Thunderbolt capability came to the iPhone 15 Pro series, we could see professionals quickly transfer ProRes videos to computers, or even to their iPads much faster. This wasn’t possible in an efficient way before, as using the lightning connector was fairly slow and limited in many ways. Using external fast storage drives to back up the iPhone would also be more efficient, assuming the connector and the third-party product is compatible.

That’s not all. The iPhone 15 Pro and iPhone 15 Pro Max flagships could also benefit from even faster charging speeds, assuming Apple manages to keep the heat under control. Faster charging could quickly generate more heat, and if Apple can sort out the issues, we could even see much quicker charging speeds on the latest Pro series of iPhones.

Remember that this is just a rumor at this point, and as always, you should take it with a heavy grain of salt. We have many unanswered questions about the iPhone 15 series, and the USB-C port will likely be one of the highlights during the event, so we’re expecting to learn a lot more in September.

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