Apple is expected to overhaul its iPad lineup in 2017 with new screen sizes and software capabilities, as well as perhaps a new Apple Pencil. One lingering question, however, is what kind of connectivity the new iPads will use.
Since Apple put such as focus on the power of USB-C with the 12-inch MacBook and more recently the MacBook Pro, there’s been speculation as to whether or not the iPad (and iPhone) will ever adopt the standard.
What do you think? Should the next iPad use Lightning or USB-C connectivity?
Ben Lovejoy previously outlined the possibility of Apple switching to USB-C for its iOS devices, with a third of respondents saying that Apple would make the switch in 2018. For the iPad, however, it makes sense for it to adopt USB-C as Apple continues to market the device as a PC replacement.
Switching to USB-C on the iPad would open the device up to a wide-array of accessories, thus making it a more powerful and capable device and strengthen Apple’s argument that it’s a PC replacement.
USB-C is also generally more powerful than Lightning. Last year, Apple released a Lightning to USB-C cable targeted at iPad Pro users. When paired with the included 29W power block, 12.9-inch iPad Pro users can take full advantage of that power to charge their device at a much faster rate. In our review, we noted that the USB-C to Lightning cable is what Apple should have included with the iPad Pro in the first place.
Specifically for the iPad Pro, a switch to USB-C would keep Apple’s branding and I/O consistent. Bringing USB-C to the iPad Pro would mean that Apple’s two ‘Pro’ products would be fully embracing USB-C and the benefits that go along with it.
Switching to USB-C with just the iPad, however, would create some fragmentation between iOS devices. The iPhone would still be using Lightning while the iPad would have USB-C. On the other hand, Apple has repeatedly marketed the iPad as being just as. capable as a PC, so switching to USB-C would make the device the same as the MacBook Pro.
Personally, I think the eventual goal should be USB-C across the board for Apple’s devices, but having the iPad adopt it first would ease the transition for iPhone users.
What do you think? Should Apple switch to USB-C connectivity with the iPad? Should the iPad only adopt it if the iPhone does as well? Let us know what you think down in the comments.