Belkin, a leading supplier of various gadgets and additions for mobile devices, this week introduced two industry’s first third-party accessories with Lightning cable for Apple iPhone 5, latest iPod Touch and new iPad tablets. Belkin intends to launch several more products with Lightning connector later this year.
The first two third-party devices are slim-profile Belkin Car Charger for Lightning (10W, 2.1A) with 4” cable and overvoltage protection compatible with iPhone 5, iPad 5, iPad mini, iPod Touch; as well as Belkin Charge + Sync Dock for iPhone 5 with Lightning connector and audio-out port, but without Lightning cable itself. These new accessories will be the first third-party Lightning accessories available in market and are the first of several new Lightning accessories from Belkin that will launch this year.
Apple reportedly wants to certify all the third-party devices - from plain cables and chargers to sophisticated docking stations and speakers - for compliance with the new Lightning interconnection technology that the company first implemented in the iPhone 5 and which is also present in iPad mini and fourth-generation iPad.
The Lightning connector enables new levels of interconnection speeds and can be plugged into the device in either orientation. However, as a researcher found, Apple included a special authentication chip into each Lightning cable to enable dynamic assignment of cable's pins. The authentication chip makes it harder for third-party accessories makers to make their products and required them to work very closely with Apple on every single accessory. Apparently, Belkin was quick enough to get the chips and license from Apple.
"Belkin was the first third-party manufacturer to develop accessories for the 30-pin connector back in 2003, and we are thrilled to be first to market again with solutions for the new Lightning connector. People are eager for Lightning accessories and Belkin's give them a reliable way to keep their new iPhone 5, iPad 4, iPad mini or iPod touch charged, protected, and ready to go," said Martin Avila, general manager of Belkin's core division.
Belkin has been a trusted brand creating solutions to complement the Apple ecosystem for almost 30 years. Beginning with its first product, the "Hamlet" printer interface back in 1985 to the introduction of the first iOS-based Wi-Fi home control product, WeMo, in 2012, Belkin is well known for creating innovative accessories that enhance and protect Apple's products. Belkin continues that tradition with the first third party accessories for the new Lightning connector.