Let’s face it, it’s heavenly that Apple keeps switching from connector to connector. But now we can convert an AirPods case from Lighting to USB-C. How? A handy DIY dude managed to do it. With ease. OMT editor Dennis Mons is also fed up and wants to know how this YouTuber did it.
This DIY solution charges your AirPods via USB-C. Is that simple for us? No. Is it actually doable with proper guidance? Yes it is. The step from Lightning to USB-C is pretty much a piece of cake, especially for AirPods users. Erhm, provided you have two right hands and never shiver.
Apple beware: DIY makes AirPods USB-C
Okay: it is possible to buy an adapter from Lightning to USB-C (only 25 euros), which is just sad, but that aside. Anyway, an extra flubbel (the technical term for idiotic adapter plastic) doesn’t really cover the load anyway. We are bobbing on an island of plastic and for God’s sake let’s not make that floating platform much bigger.
Finer, though, if you could just use your USB-C cable, like the one from the new iPad (or literally any new device right now) on your Airpods. You couldn’t. Until now. After all, an inventor wants to quell all that plastic clutter and started tinkering with the Airpods Pro.
It’s actually silly that Apple is dragging its heels when it comes to implementing a new, common standard now that it’s being enforced by the European Commission. But leave it to tinkerer and YouTuber Ken Pillonel to change that.
The great thing about Pillonel is that his thinking is not even to thwart Apple. He just genuinely wants to make sure plastic junk doesn’t end up in the environment. In his Exploring the Simulation Channel channel, he not only tackles Apple, but also encrypts earbuds from other reputable brands like Bose.
The sad thing about these companies is that they are unruly when it comes to innovation. Needless to say, Apple is quite keen on the fact that all those countless adapters bring in quite a bit of money, so USB-C gets pushed aside a bit.
As such, the YouTube channel iFixit gave repairing the AirPods and AirPods Pro a one out of ten in terms of repair. There was no country to turn to. They are hard to open and parts can be counted on one hand. So goodbye Self Service Repair.
Nomad protective case for AirPods Pro 2 (Image: Nomad)
Pillonel wants to put a stop to that AirPods nonsense
Repairing your AirPods and even a USB-C connector is something the inventor thinks is an important issue. “The goal of this project is to make the number of repairs successful and minimize the quantity of electronic clutter,” he states.
The solution to USB-C he suggests, then, is a charging case with aperture printing with the appropriate ports. This will incorporate a USB-C port input and can be fully functional with a few inexpensive parts.
So said and so done as far as his model was concerned, were it not for a hitch: the part to connect the USB-C instead of Lightning port to the charging case was not exactly in stock. According to Pillonel, this was due to the small learning curve of people who want to repair it themselves.
“We immediately realized that two million people watched our first video where we started this procedure, but it was maybe too difficult. That’s why the demand for those parts was much less,” he believes.
(Image: Mark Hofman / OMT)
“A battery for AirPods can be purchased online, but that’s also the only part available,” Pillonel said. “If a charging part is broken, there’s no way to buy that unless it’s from another defective device.”
So the USB-C connector for the AirPods case for its own repair was a bit too much for now.
So the point is a tad painful: if someone in their garage can cram USB-C into AirPods instead of Lightning, why can’t Apple’s entire R&D department?