RIP, iPhone dongles? Apple approves Lightning-to-3.5mm cable spec

Apple has expanded its Made for iPhone (MFi) certification program to now include specifications for USB-C ports, as well as a Lightning to 3.5mm output cable.

Apple has updated the specifications for its MFi accessories program, which also got a new logo makeover this weekend. This means users still have to fork out upwards of $25 to grab themselves a USB-C to lightning cable.

The new logos that will be used for products coming out of the MFi program are not a huge change from the previous branding, but they do notably remove icons representing actual devices in exchange for a simplified Apple logo and just the iOS device names in text.

As the industry slowly plods towards transitioning to USB-C - in Apple's case, at least in terms of laptops - tiny shifts like this are important as the port technology progressively becomes more popular.

Companies that are a part of the MFi program can add USB-C receptacles on officially certified Mac and iOS accessories for charging.

At present, the iPhone 6S and iPhone SE are the only phones that Apple sell which include a traditional headphone jack, and we can't see Apple including one on any future releases. They can also use the USB port on their Mac with the same cable to charge their Apple device.

Apple's documentation for the new specs lists battery packs and speakers as products that could benefit from using a USB-C receptacle. One could use a product like Apple's own Lightning to 3.5mm headphone jack adapter that it included in the box with new iPhones, and then use a male-to-male 3.5mm cable to connect to a device's 3.5mm input. Products are also allowed to bundle USB-C cables with the MFi accessories. The new cable would improve the user experience from an audio perspective and add more durability to the entire product.

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