Home > Apple > Lightning video adapters are fascinating Lightning video adapters are fascinating Thom Holwerda 2019-07-28 Apple 9 Comments Here is my little thread about Lightning video adapters – also known as Haywire – which are actually computers that feature Apple Secure Boot and run Darwin kernel. I rarely link to Twitter threads, but this one is really good. About The Author Thom Holwerda Follow me on Mastodon @firstname.lastname@example.org 9 Comments 2019-07-28 2:40 pm sukru Interesting, and also over-engineered. Instead of passing simple video data thru the connector, it talks to a small computer using essentially a remote desktop protocol (think AirPlay). It not only has to do the encoding / decoding (hence loss of quality), it also has to maintain the firmware of the computer (to probably save 1/4 cents on a $50 device). Even though the competing type-C has its quirks, not needing a $50 remote desktop adapter for display is a great advantage. Lightning had its uses, however it might be time to move on. 2019-07-29 8:34 am Carewolf It is because Lighting is just USB2 with proprietary protocols on top and a custom form factor, it has too little bandwidth to pass display data through raw, so it uses lossy compression and then decompresses inside the cables. 2019-07-29 10:36 am sukru Type-C USB3 does not have the bandwidth either. It has additional pins (4 I think) to transfer alternative streams. That is also true for older USB2 phone cables. Both micro and even older mini ports were able to transfer data + video + power using additional pins. And if I remember correctly the micro one was more or less standardized: https://www.digitaltrends.com/home-theater/what-is-mhl-and-how-does-it-work/ 2019-07-31 5:23 am Carewolf Well, you are right that USB-C uses the alternative stream for display-port mode, but it does have handwidth enough for FHD content at 60fps uncompressed (USB3 has the same bandwidth as Thunderbolt 1 had). It is just better to use alternative mode for even more bandwidth. 2019-07-29 8:50 am Bill Shooter of Bul What if.. the next iphone had … No cables! I mean wireless charging works. You can stream to tvs much more reliably even with google cromecasts. Why have a thing to plug into a computer? Be bold Apple! wires are so 20th century! 2019-07-29 11:13 am Alfman Bill Shooter of Bul, What if.. the next iphone had … No cables! I mean wireless charging works. You can stream to tvs much more reliably even with google cromecasts. Why have a thing to plug into a computer? Be bold Apple! wires are so 20th century! You’re probably right that a completely wireless/portless phone will happen though I’m not sure it’ll really be such a killer feature. Going all wireless means having more devices to charge every day. Charging via Inductive coupling is “cool”, but is technically slower, less efficient, takes more space, and ironically gives you even less freedom than you have with wires. The phone needs to be so close that one might as well be using a cradle. Admittedly cradles break modern rules about flat/sleek aesthetics, but if you think about it, laying the phone down flat is kind of a con.. Anways, I agree with you the all wireless design is likely to happen, but IMHO it’s not going to be all that revolutionary. https://www.nytimes.com/2018/10/03/technology/personaltech/wireless-charging-pros-cons.html 2019-07-29 1:30 pm Bill Shooter of Bul My tongue was most definitively firmly in my cheek on that one. It won’t be revolutionary, but the cable seems pointless now, like a floppy disk in 2006. I mean sure if it had the one useful port ( 3.5 mil headphone jack), keep all the other wires for good measure, but that should have been the last one to be removed, not the first. Speed of charging is nice, but at least for iphones, they were never fast. Android was always faster, even back when you could (*gasp*) switch a dead battery for a charged one. 2019-07-29 2:25 pm Alfman Bill Shooter of Bul, My tongue was most definitively firmly in my cheek on that one. Oh, my detector needs an upgrade 🙂 It won’t be revolutionary, but the cable seems pointless now, like a floppy disk in 2006. I mean sure if it had the one useful port ( 3.5 mil headphone jack), keep all the other wires for good measure, but that should have been the last one to be removed, not the first. I don’t think it’s like a floppy disk because the floppy disk had no advantages and stopped being useful, whereas cords still have advantages and are useful. I actually prefer corded to wireless peripherals because I hate charging things separately and running out of power between charges. Nevertheless, the market should provide an all wireless device because one size does not fit all, having choices is good. Being fully waterproof (no risk of sand getting in or anything) would be awesome. 2019-07-30 10:02 am Bill Shooter of Bul Alfman, yeah everyone has their preferences. I didn’t even think of the battery case phenomenon that is kinda popular. That would be more difficult without wires. But for me, I wouldn’t care. The existing port doesn’t bother me in any case. It just seems like the apple thing to do to remove a feature many people seem to want or need, just because its cool or saves a trivial amount of space.