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August 19, 2014

iPhone 6 Leak? Reversible USB Cable Suggests Imminent Market Arrival

File it under “first world problems,” but one of the most irksome parts about a modern day is plugging a USB device into a USB port, only to discover that it just won't work because the plug is actually upside down. That's led some to try and develop a reversible USB plug—one that can, amazingly, work in the port regardless of how it's been plugged in—and now, we appear to be closing in on one particular version of that advance. Specifically, it's the Lightning to reversible USB connection, and new leaks suggest that this could be closer to hitting store shelves than ever.

A set of new photos and videos have emerged showing said cables in action, complete with one showing the cable both connecting to the Lightning port and then connecting to an iPhone, in both directions, implying that it really didn't matter in which direction it had been attached to the port, that it would have worked just fine either way. However, this video is said to lack one important point, in that it doesn't show the cable actually working.

But a subsequent video seemed to put any fears that these might be faked sources to rest; the video showed the Lightning to reversible USB charging an iPhone, in both orientations. Admittedly, some have spotted potential flaws in this video as well—particularly that the whole cable isn't immediately visible—the word comes from “well-placed sources” at last report. This adds further credibility to the proceedings, and is enough to make most wonder if it's only a matter of time until the next major release of a USB cable that can work no matter how it gets plugged in.

Having dealt with more than my share of USB cables over the years, from wireless adapters to standard USB attachments to power chargers and beyond, yes, the thought of a reversible USB plug sounds fantastic, but only in the most general of senses. It would be nice to be able to plug in devices quickly and easily and without incident. But by like token, even when I've gone to plug in a USB plug and found it incorrectly oriented, it's a problem that's only a matter of seconds to fix.

While only time will tell if the Lightning to reversible USB cables make an appearance in stores any time soon, the end result here will likely prove welcome for the intended market. It may not be much of a time savings, but time saved is time saved, and at the end of the day, that's time that can be put to use anywhere else.

Edited by Stefania Viscusi

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