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Dongle fever: Apple cuts the price of its USB Type-C adapters

Apple announced its new MacBook Pro laptops last week, and the response to them was mixed. While it's selling well, many are unhappy with the lack of support for legacy peripherals; they only offer four Thunderbolt 3 ports.

First of all, Thunderbolt 3 is a fantastic technology, in that it's a sort of "one cable to rule them all". One Thunderbolt 3 port can power a single 5K monitor, or two 4K monitors, or it can be used for just about anything else. It's also USB Type-C, so many of the cables that users already have will already work.

But this is supposed to be a Pro machine, and most professionals still have accessories that require a USB Type-A port. Even an iPhone would require a separate Lightning cable from the Lightning to USB Type-A wire that comes in the box. The joke of dongles becoming Apple's next big business has become something of a running joke over the last week.

Apple issued the following statement:

We recognize that many users, especially pros, rely on legacy connectors to get work done today and they face a transition. We want to help them move to the latest technology and peripherals, as well as accelerate the growth of this new ecosystem. Through the end of the year, we are reducing prices on all USB-C and Thunderbolt 3 peripherals we sell, as well as the prices on Apple's USB-C adapters and cables.

Here are the discounts that Apple will be offering:

  • USB-C to traditional USB adapter from $19 to $9

  • Thunderbolt 3 to Thunderbolt 2 adapter from $49 to $29

  • USB-C to Lightning cable (1 meter) from $25 to $19

  • USB-C to Lightning cable (2 meters) from $35 to $29

  • Multiport adapter with HDMI, USB, and USB-C from $69 to $49

  • Multiport adapter with VGA, USB, and USB-C from $69 to $49

USB Type-C has really been taking off over the couple years, with its first shot at notoriety when Apple released the MacBook, which only has a single Type-C port. It's shown up on almost all non-Apple flagship handsets as well; however, most companies would include a USB Type-A to Type-C adapter in the box, rather than a Type-C to Type-C charger.

This is bound to be good news for anyone that plans to adopt the new MacBook Pro, and hopefully the world will be able to quickly move past this dongle-filled transitional period.

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