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Dock overhaul expected as Apple seeks new engineers

New job postings on Apple's website indicate that the Cupertino tech giant is seeking two engineers to redesign the existing 30-pin dock connector currently in use on all iOS devices.

The new postings lend legitimacy to the rampant rumours that Apple will introduce a new, smaller connector with the next iPhone instead of the ubiquitous 30-pin plug used on all iPhones, iPads, and iPods since 2003. Apple is said to be prepping a smaller connector in order to make room for things like 4G and heftier batteries.

Now, adding fuel to those rumours are two new job listings posted to Apple's website seeking a "Connector Design Engineer" and a "Product Design Eng - Connector" to work in Cupertino. These individuals will be charged with "managing multiple connector designs and developments in support of the iPod product lines". Both postings go on to say the job will "involve adaptation of existing connectors or complete new designs".

The job descriptions do not specifically mention the iPhone, but any change to the iPod dock connector would likely affect Apple's other iDevices as well. Recent rumours indicate that the sixth-generation iPhone, expected to be released in October, will have a new, pill-shaped dock connector that is only slightly larger than the bottom speaker hole on the existing iPhone 4S.

The news was first reported by Ars Technica.

Leaked images hit the Web this week purportedly showing the next-generation iPhone with a much smaller dock connector. There have also been rumours of a magnetically attached iOS connector, like the power cords used for MacBook laptops.

A change to the 30-pin dock connector would, naturally, make existing docking systems incompatible with future iDevices, unless Apple released some sort of adapter.