When Apple introduced the proprietary Lightning connection on iPhone, iPad and iPod, it made laying your hands on a compatible cable a total pain. Here we show you how to charge or connect to a computer your iPhone, iPad or iPod using a MicroUSB cable.
How to convert MicroUSB to Apple Lightning
When Apple changed the proprietary connector from the 30-pin dock to Lightning on its iPhone 5, iPad 4 and fifth-gen iPod touch, for many users it meant yet another cable to carry around, especially if they were also using older Apple products and/or an Android smartphone or tablet.
Given that Apple charges £15 for its official USB-to-Lightning cable, you probably have just the one Lightning cable - that which came with your iPhone, iPad or iPod. Which also means it's probably at home, attached to your wall charger, and never where you need it when you need it.
Ask someone in the office to lend you an iPhone cable and you can almost bet on the fact they will pull out an old-style 30-pin dock connector cable. That's no good.
Wouldn't life be so much easier if you could charge or connect to your computer your iPad, iPhone or iPod using MicroUSB? These cables are never in short supply, bundled with everything from Android phones and Android tablets to Bluetooth speakers and headsets, external hard drives, portable USB chargers… the list goes on. I have a drawer full of them.
Fortunately, all you need to get your iPad, iPhone or iPod working with MicroUSB is a tiny adaptor that can convert MicroUSB to Lightning.
We like this EC2001L 2 in 1 Micro USB Cable with Apple Lightning Adaptor 1.2m from Inateck. It costs £9.99 from Amazon, which might sound pricey, but don't forget Apple charges £15 for its official Lightning cable. And it's incredibly useful.
The Inateck EC2001L is sold as a 1.2m MicroUSB cable and a small Lightning adaptor that fits over the MicroUSB connector. Two end caps are also supplied to protect the adaptors in transit. You can use this adaptor with any MicroUSB cable, not just that which is supplied by Inateck, but its flat design may make it less prone to damage, and at 1.2m this Inateck cable is long enough to reach to the furthest USB ports on your PC or Mac.
If you use a mixture of Windows Phone, Android and Apple products, the Inateck EC2001 will let you charge any of these devices using a single USB cable. Plus, carry the Inateck connector with you and you'll be able to hook up your iPhone, iPad or iPod wherever you go.
Inateck's EC2001L 2 in 1 Micro USB Cable with Apple Lightning Adaptor 1.2m is compatible with all devices that have a MicroUSB connection, plus the iPhone 5, 5c, 5s and 6, iPad with Retina display and iPad Air, iPad mini and iPad mini with Retina display, the fifth-generation iPod touch and seventh-generation iPod nano.
An alternative option is the Tylt Syncable-Duo. It's more expensive, at £27.99 from OnPointUK.com, but unlike the Inateck it is Apple MFi-certified and tethers the Lightning adaptor to the MicroUSB cable to save you losing it. The Syncable-Duo is available in three sizes (1ft, 2ft and 1m) and comes in black, red, blue or green.