As rumor would have it, Apple is planning a smaller, 9 pin dock connector for its next generation iPhone. However, this poses quite an issue for developers of dock related accessories who need to design, build and test their products before they release them. But, just days from the rumored September announcement date for Apple’s iPhone 5, and Apple still hasn’t released the required specifications to accessory manufacturers.
This could mean one of a number of things. Either Apple is trying to keep the design and features of the next iPhone as big a secret as possible, or there is no smaller dock connector. Should that be the case, then it could mean that the supposed iPhone designs we’ve been seeing recently aren’t the real deal. This is entirely possible, as the prospect of a smaller dock connector isn’t a new one (lets bear in mind that Apple have been using the same 30 pin dock connector for near enough 10 years now), so perhaps Cupertino will stick to tradition and keep the 30 pin model.
It remains possible, however, that Apple may merely attempt to dominate the 2012 holiday market by selling its own accessories—perhaps including adapters for older accessories—then supply new connectors and chips to developers in 2013.
Personally, I think the latter is probably the most likely idea. Apple cannot take a commission from every accessory that’s available, because of the sheer number of ‘black market’ goods that are manufactured, so it makes sense to gain everything possible until accessories that Apple don’t benefit from are created.