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posted by Fnord666 on Friday February 05 2021, @06:34PM   Printer-friendly

Apple may finally fix its flimsy iPhone charger cables:

Every iPhone user likely has had one Lighting cable fray [on] them. It's been an annoying issue, and one that's driven third-party sellers to create braided cables that can withstand more abuse.

It seems that Apple is at the very least researching ways to make its cables more resilient. According to a patent filing first noticed by AppleInsider, Apple has been working on a "cable with variable stiffness" that gets thicker toward the ports.

Lightning cables are known for having thick connector points. It's what Apple internally refers to as the strain relief sleeve. While the ends of Apple cables are meant to keep the cable from fraying, often those areas become pressure and kink points. Apple acknowledged as much in its patent filing.

"In addition to making the cable locally stiffer, the strain relief sleeve also makes the cable thicker at the ends. In some instances, the added thickness may not be desired," the patent filing reads.

To get around this, Apple is essentially designing a cable that has denser material toward the ends that tapers off. [...]


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  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday February 07 2021, @03:59AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday February 07 2021, @03:59AM (#1109871)

    I thought just this when my fanboi boss trashed his MacBookPro mag-lock power cable within less than a year of ownership. So I tried, I mean really really tried to baby mine and see just how long I could get it to last. 18 months for me.

    Mine is still unfrayed and working fine after 11+ years. But I wound some tape around the cable right at the start. It's ugly but I'm not a "true apple fanboi" who cares about how stuff looks. I was assigned the macbook pro by my workplace.

    I also don't go out of my way to arrange or untangle the cable - I usually leave the cable the way it ends up. In contrast I notice a co-worker winding his cables and doing "cable management" stuff regularly. For example, when packing up his laptop he'll wind the cables up and then put the stuff in his bag. And his cables fail often. Whereas I'll just put the cables in my bag without changing the cable arrangement.

    No surprise all this winding stuff wears out the cables:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4THXtIvJcV0 [youtube.com]
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KW6SwWuutfM [youtube.com]

    I'll untangle the cable if it gets too tangled up. But my definition of too tangled is more related to function than looks, so I only do it once every year or even few years. I seldom need the full length of the cable after all.