Apple's Lightning Cable for iOS 7 Hacked by Chinese Firm

Apple changed its iconic dock cable with the launch of the iPhone 5 to the "Lightning Cable." Apart from the cable now being reversible, Apple added an extra layer of security to their cable, so that for an accessory to work with the iPhone, the company would need a digital certificate or authorization from Apple. Not only is this massive pain for consumers (and a source of profit for Apple), but it prevents budget versions of the cable and accessories from flooding the market, while giving Apple leverage over the manufacturers. This is why the Chinese firm iPhone5Mod set out to hack this digital restriction, and they have finally done it.

The security circumvention comes at the hands of a hardware change, meaning that Apple cannot simply reverse engineer the hack using the software itself. Previously, the iPhone 5 on iOS 7 beta would give an annoying pop-up if the accessory did not have the authorization, but now cheaper cables can start pouring in from China, India and the Middle East. This is not the first time iPhone5Mod has angered Apple, having previously engineered cases that would transform an iPhone 4S to an iPhone 5. Unfortunately for the multinational giant, there is nothing they can do about it at the moment, as copyright and patent laws are treated differently in China. To show how different the cables now work from the native Apple versions, iPhone5Mod has released an instructional video, seen below.


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  • The day I took delivery of my new iPhone 5 was the day I fell out of love with Apple devices. I used the video output from my previous iPhone 4S continuously for presentations, etc, and when I discovered that I had lost video connectivity to my various non-airplay devices that was pretty much where I decided that I would never buy another Apple product again as they completely rendered useless any standard AV device that I could previously use. I ended up buying a 2nd hand previous gen iPod Touch to get around the problem.

    I'm seriously glad that someone has managed to stick it to Apple as their latest attempt at a monopoly looks doomed to failure, and lets face it, that without any product innovation what else can they do? It's pretty low. My next phone will be Windows flavoured.
  • jk_ventolero
    Good job! Apple is just too greedy.. cashing in on even the smallest things such as peripherals and cables. Bah!
  • In actual fact, because someone has hacked the cable it's actually done Apple a favour as people might be more likely to buy the phone now they have better connectivity options. Just a shame that Apple are too stupid to realise it. I will resist putting iOS7 on my phone for as long as I can.
  • homerhellboy223
    Good job!
  • COLGeek
    That didn't take too long...Was only a matter of time.
  • kin3000
    'm surprised it took you five generations of iphones to finally realize that Apple tries to monopolize every peripheral/accessory/cable for every single product they make.
  • Dyseman
    In other news, more Chinese people will be electrocuted by non-licensed / hack-crap cords! Once they circulate through the world, Android/Win8 people will be the sole survivors!
  • back_by_demand
    I understand the need to shrink the cables, but to not adopt an existing micro-usb was blatant money grabbing - reap what ye sow, Apple
  • john987
    As long as apple remains in business, it will show how stupid humans can be.
  • falcompsx
    As bad as Apple's money grab tendancies are, had they just made lightning a new usb3.0 micro connector as an open standard I would love it. The connector itself is actually quite well designed and its nice to be able to just plug it in without verifying its right-side-up. Having to pay the apple tax for such a minor quality of life change is just wrong though. Its a shame Apple can't make things like this and make them open standards instead of grabbing money at every chance they can get.