Much has been said about Apple's new Lightning connector and the US$35 adapter that you'll need to make your old 30-pin accessories work — including that it's an "awful" thing.
The Lightning to 30-pin adapter
(Screenshot by CNET)
Ignoring claims of the "Apple tax" regarding the relatively high cost of the adapter, and whether the Lightning technology is really even a step forward, there are still a few questions about the adapter that people with a lot of iOS A/V-related accessories should be asking.
Firstly, the product page states that "some 30-pin accessories are not supported". What's really required is a complete list of what is and isn't supported — otherwise, consumers run the risk of spending US$35 on a device that won't work with the adapter.
A screen grab of the adapter product page.
(Screenshot by CNET)
Secondly — and again on the product page for the adapter — we see this sentence: "Video and iPod out not supported".
iPod out is a confusing term; it would seem, on the face of it, to suggest that the adapter won't work with music docks, but this isn't the case. A bit of digging indicates that iPod out — which was first named as a component of iOS 4 — refers specifically to in-car audio. iPod out is used to add iPod controls to compatible car displays. Not much has been written about iPod out for a few years, but we did locate the below BMW video talking about the feature from July 2010:
The non-support of video out, however, is a bigger deal for people who have integrated iOS into their video entertainment ecosystem, both at home and elsewhere, with devices such as Philips PV7002i (which streams video from your iPhone to screens in the back seat of your car). While we're not suggesting that there's a massive portion of the population using their iOS devices to stream video around the home, it's worth noting that this isn't an option with the adapter. It also means that A/V companies such as Pioneer and Yamaha have been on the money with their push for wireless connectivity.
We contacted Apple locally, and a representative confirmed that "speaker docks and in-car capabilities won't be affected". We're just waiting for clarification on what will be affected by the lack of iPod-out support.