apple lightning

In one industrial-redesign swoop, Apple rendered millions of iGizmo accessories useless by introducing its "lightning" connector.

Along with the iPhone 5, Apple in 2012 debuted the eight-prong lightning connector used for charging the iPhone, iPad and iPod. It's 80% smaller than the 30-pin connector that had been Apple's standard since 2003.

Apple said the tinier lightning plug will let it make its iGizmos smaller (just look at the iPhone 6 for proof). But it also meant that all the zillions of power cords Apple fans have stashed to keep their gadgets charged became obsolete. Apple sells adapters ... for $30 a pop.

First published December 2, 2015: 10:04 AM ET

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