One of the “big” improvements shared during the recently concluded iPhone 5 launch was the adoption of a smaller dock connector that Apple has dubbed “Lightning.” Perhaps the biggest positive I saw to this change is that the Lightning connector is reversible; no more frustrating moments resulting from jamming the cable into your device the wrong.
But new rumors are saying that aside from being easier to plug into your iPhone 5, the adoption of this new connector may now also allow your Apple smartphone to function as a USB Host.
Here are the details from Macotakara:
Apple announced that their new dock connector “Lightning” has been re-designed as fully digital device. Farmer Dock connector has long developing history, it started as analog communicating connector, and had been gradually digitized by each generation.
Because Apple has dozen of iPod’s, old Dock should be designed carefully with optimizing amplifier sound and digital output, and 3rd party faces compatibility issues. Now Lightning makes 3rd party to be easier for developing sound accessories.
Since old Dock connector regulation supports 3 types of accessories as charging, serial and device, new Lightning supports additionally hosting USB devices.
If this proves to be true, then iPhone 5 owners will have a lot of reason to rejoice as this opens up a whole lot of possibilities and could mean that practically any device that can be connected with a USB cord can now be used with your iPhone 5. Previously, only the iPad has been able to work as a USB host but that functionality was limited and was mostly used for transfering photos between devices.
Lightning is an 8 signal connector that will be replacing the old 30-pin connectors that have been used on iOS devices since 2003. The iPhone 5, together with the new iPod Touch and iPod Nano will be the first iOS devices to adopt them.