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Apple Inc. (AAPL) iPhone 5 Alienates Other iDevices

Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) has unveiled the iPhone 5 last week, and it has undergone some upgrades from the iPhone 4S, including a thinner, longer, lighter design. But there is one thing that has changed that essentially creates a whole new iPhone 5 universe – one that is separated from other Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) devices, which seem to connect well with each other.

Call it a strike of Lightning.

Jony Ive, Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)

Among the updates and upgrades of the iPhone 5 over the previous model, there is the connector. The ever-so-familiar 30-pin Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) connector that links most iDevices with each other has been replaced by a smaller 19-pin connector, called Lightning.  While the iPhone is being sold at a very reasonable and competitive $200, $300 and $400 price point, the Lightning connector now essentially disconnects from the older Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) universe. Those who buy the iPhone 5 will be able to re-connect with other iDevices, probided they pay $29 for an adapter.

But this adapter would connect the iPhone to a single older device – if one has an iPod, iMac and iPad, for example, then an iPhone 5 user would pay nearly $90 extra for adapters in order to keep the old universe and the new universe – with the iPhone 5 being the center, rather than Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) itself  – tethered to each other. And since this Lightning connector is patented,  there likely won’t be cheap knock-offs or competition any time soon.

Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) seems to be pushing “reset” on the self-contained ecosystem that it has been known for, and it appears to be using the latest iterations of iDevices as the place where to establish its new self-contained universe. Will peole be willing to pay an extra $30 to keep the new Apple-verse connected with the old one? That might be an interesting question not only for consumers shopping for a new smartphone this holiday season, but it is something that likely will watch in sales numbers for Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) – which is a vital number looked upon by investors in Apple stock, like hedge-fund manager David Einhorn of Greenlight Capital.

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