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Originally introduced as a key feature of Apple’s iPad Pro, the Smart Connector was once thought to be solely for connecting 3rd party peripherals (such as keyboards) to the iPad’s Smart Connector port — from which, of course, power could be drawn and data could be transferred without wires.
However, as we begin to see Apple’s Smart Connector become integrated into other devices — such as the company’s 9.7-inch iPad Pro, it’s becoming all the clearer that Apple has much bigger plans for its Smart Connector. Heck, recent rumors even indicate that the company’s Smart Connector might be making its debut on the iPhone 7 this fall.
Well, believe it or not, since its debut last fall, several 3rd party accessory makers have shown us that they’re capable of creating other accessories that can draw upon Apple’s Smart Connector for power and data. One of these new accessories, in particular, which was unveiled just this morning, is Logitech’s ‘Logi Base’. In essence, the Logi Base is a Smart Connector-based wireless charging platform for Apple’s iPad Pro. This means that Logi Base could provide power to Apple’s behemoth iPad wirelessly, as opposed to via a traditional Lightning/USB connection.
Ironically enough, when Logitech took the wraps off its new accessory this morning, the company openly touted how Apple’s Smart Connector port has always been an open platform — for which accessories can be made that utilize low-power data transfer, and even feed power to or from these accessories.
Reverting to the issue of the iPhone 7 Smart Connector, however, one is perhaps left to wonder why? What’s the purpose?
Well, it’s very possible that Apple has some bigger plans for the iPhone’s Smart Connector. Given the iPhone’s size and the fact that Apple wants to make it impossibly thin, it’s not too unreasonable to assume that a Smart Connector-enabled iPhone could easily pair up with wireless charging docks, wireless headphones, maybe even camera accessories.
There are currently multiple rumors circulating, for instance, about how Apple will be axing the standard 3.5mm on its forthcoming iPhone handset. The rumors allege that Apple will be shaving a full millimeter off the thickness of the iPhone 7 — this in relation to the current iPhone 6s’ 7.1mm thickness.
Nevertheless, it’s speculated that Apple’s implementation of the Smart Connector on iPhone would open up a treasure trove of opportunity for 3rd party accessory manufacturers. For instance, an external battery charging case — such as those from the likes of Mophie — could provide for quick and easy charging without the extra bulk. Alternatively, Apple could simply create its own wireless charging dock, or wireless headphone adapter? Maybe a camera rig with larger flash and built-in optical zoom? I suppose the possibilities are endless, right?
It might not make complete sense to include a Smart Connector at this point in time, but if anything, Apple has shown us that it always has a good justification for doing what it does.
Learn More: Top 5 Things the iPhone 7 Needs
What do you think about the capabilities of Apple’s Smart Connector? Let us know in the comments!
[The information provided in this article has NOT been confirmed by Apple and may be speculation. Provided details may not be factual. Take all rumors, tech or otherwise, with a grain of salt.]