iOS 13 Beta Reveals iPhone 11 Might Drop Lightning Connector In Favor Of USB-C

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Apple’s 2019 iPhone series — which is oftentimes unofficially referred to as the “iPhone 11” line — won’t be arriving until about three months from now, but the rumors are already heating up as the wait for the new devices continues. One interesting rumor recently suggested that the iPhone 11 would come with the same USB-C charger included with this year’s iPad Pro, allowing users to charge their devices faster and connect their iPhones to a wider range of computers without having to buy a special dongle. Now, it appears that an eagle-eyed user has spotted some details on the iOS 13 beta that hints at the possibility of Apple ditching Lightning support in favor of USB-C on its 2019 iPhone line.

According to a report from BGR, the sighting was shared by a French Twitter user, who noticed something different when he connected his iPhone to a MacBook laptop to restore the device via iTunes. While previous iOS versions displayed Lightning cable and iTunes icons when device owners would perform such actions, the user spotted two new icons — one which resembled a laptop and another which looked like a USB-C cable.

Although the new findings suggest that there’s a chance Apple is ending Lightning support after seven years and introducing USB-C ports as a key new feature on the iPhone 11 series, BGR cautioned that the new icons “might not mean anything.” The outlet explained that it’s also possible Apple is using “more generic visuals” on the iOS 13 beta to educate users on how to connect their iPhones to their MacBooks. However, it was also noted that Apple is generally known for using “specific” visuals on its operating systems.

The new generation of iPad Pros joined Apple’s most recent MacBooks and Macs by making the switch from Lightning to USB-C when they were introduced in the fall of 2018, as noted by BGR. While it’s far from confirmed that Apple will do the same with the iPhone 11, the outlet suggested that there could be a number of good reasons why the company may do this, including the aforementioned benefit of fast charging and allowing users a wider range of support across USB-C products.

In relation to the second reason, TechRadar separately speculated that Apple may be trying to ensure that users would only need “one type of charger across the board” for the iPhone, iPad Pro, MacBook, and Mac. Likewise, Atherton Research analyst Jean Baptiste Su wrote for Forbes in October 2018 that USB-C’s many advantages make it likely that Apple will “go all-in on USB-C” this year and eschew the Lightning connector for all its devices.