Apple’s upcoming iPhone 15 series of smartphones may usher in a new era of USB-C accessories that are only compatible with devices approved by the company’s own Made for iPhone (MFi) certification program. The integrated circuit found in first-party and MFi-certified Lightning ports and connectors contain a small chip that authenticates the accessories involved in the connection, while non-MFi-certified third-party charging cables lack this chip and may produce a “This accessory is not supported” warning when connected.
The new USB-C port will have a Lightning-like authentication chip, according to a rumor out of China, and ShrimpApplePro backed this claim in a tweet on Tuesday. Foxconn, which manufactures a range of Apple products and accessories, is reportedly mass producing MFi-certified EarPods and cables for the new iPhones.
The primary purpose of the MFi program is to protect Apple customers from counterfeit and potentially dangerous accessories. Customers who buy MFi-certified accessories will also enjoy special features only available to MFi-certified accessories such as faster data transfer rates and enhanced charging speed.
However, AppleShrimpPro believes we should also expect software limitations on cables not certified by the MFi program, as the leaker claims that these cables will be limited in terms of data and charging speed. This information is consistent with the predictions of Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, who expects the iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Plus to feature USB-C ports that are only capable of Lightning/USB 2.0 speeds, while faster transfer speeds are exclusive to the iPhone 15 Pro and iPhone 15 Pro Max models.
These reports provide interesting new insight into Apple’s plans for the USB-C ports on the iPhone 15 series. It appears Apple will use the MFi program to restrict certain features of unapproved accessories, and the company may also introduce software limitations. Let us know what you think about Apple’s plans in the comments!