iPhone 5 With Revamped Dock Could Render Old Accessories Obsolete

Reports that Apple is planning on revamping the dock connector on the new version of the iPhone may cause headaches for those with old iPhone accessories.

Although the latest version of Apple€™s iPhone, commonly referred to as the iPhone 5, is generating huge excitement months away from its expected debut, a report from Reuters, which suggests the company may be ditching its standard 30-pin dock connector for a smaller, 19-pin connector at the bottom of the device, could irk some party faithful who will have to replace any and all iPhone accessories that use the dock to connect to the smartphone.

According to unnamed sources familiar with the matter, Reuters reported the reason for the smaller dock was to allow for a headphone jack at the bottom of the handset. While it may annoy Apple fans, the change could be a positive one for the makers of Apple accessories or those who could sell an adapter to connect the new iPhone to older peripherals. "It represents an opportunity for accessory vendors," Pete Cunningham, an analyst at IT research firm Canalys, told the news service. "The iPhone connector has been a standard for a long time now and I would expect the same to be true for a new connector, should Apple change it as expected."

While iPhone fans and analysts might be split on the decision€”Reuters reported Taipei-based Gartner analyst C.K. Lu saying the new dock wouldn€™t stop Apple consumers from buying the iPhone, while London-based analyst Franciso Jeronimo cautioned Apple should find a solution that allows them to upgrade the phone without having to sever ties with an older accessory€”anticipation for the latest iPhone is nearing fever pitch.

According to a recent survey by ChangeWave, 14 percent of the more than 4,000 consumers surveyed said they were €œvery likely€ to purchase an iPhone 5 when it debuts, and 17 percent of respondents said they were €œsomewhat likely€ to purchase the smartphone. The report noted demand is €œstrikingly higher€ for the latest iPhone than for any previous model.

"Advance demand for the 'iPhone 5' is strikingly higher than we've seen for any previous iPhone model," Dr. Paul Carton, ChangeWave's vice president of research noted in the report. "Overall smartphone sales should spike to an all-time high this fall, and of course Apple is going to be the number one beneficiary. But besides Apple, and to a lesser degree Samsung, no other manufacturer is likely to benefit from this coming wave of demand."

The new iPhone is expected to sport a larger, 4-inch 16:9 display, a bump up from the 3.5-inch screen found on all previous models. The handset is likely to offer other enhanced features to face competitors like the Samsung Galaxy S III and other Google Android-based smartphones, such as Long-Term Evolution (LTE), near-field communication (NFC) capabilities and a faster quad-core processor.