Following several reports that third-party manufacturers would have trouble creating accessories and cables for Apple’s new Lightning connectors, iLounge reported today that Apple is making major changes to its ‘Made For iPad/iPhone/iPod (MFi)’ policies. According to the report, Apple will have to approve manufacturing facilities creating Lightning products—something that sources indicated will not happen until November:
One source notes that Apple is planning an MFi “seminar,” where it will discuss changes to the program and the rules for Lightning accessory development going forward. The seminar will be held in November in China, notes the source, after the point at which third-party Lightning accessories could be manufactured in time for holiday sale. Sources have further noted that the Lightning connector has proved difficult to copy, reducing the near-term likelihood of unauthorized third-party connector cables.
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Earlier this month, third-party Lightning adapters and cables appeared briefly on retailers like Amazon. At the heart of manufacturer troubles, there appears to be a unique authentication chip discovered in the new cable. Experts seem to agree it will be difficult for third parties to reverse engineer. If today’s report from iLounge is accurate, it looks like there will be less-than-usual accessories and third-party adapters/cables floating around this holiday season for the new iPhone.