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steve96815

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Sep 7, 2009
19
5
Something to look out for when you get a new iPad Pro. Got mine last week and wanted to charge it for the first time. Plugged in USB-C cable and...nothing happens. Unplugged and plugged it in the other way...charges immediately. Tried the USB-C cable and charger from my old 2018 iPad Pro, same story. The problem also occurs with all USB-C accessories, from headphone adapter to USB sticks to hard drives. They are all only recognized if plugged in on a specific side of the USB-C plug. So basically, the port acts as if USB-C cables were non-reversible.
By chance, I discovered that if I plug something in "the wrong way" so that it doesn't get recognized, and then exert a small amount of pressure on the iPad's display in an area about an inch above the USB-C port, the connection comes to life.
Based on the iFixit teardown, the USB-C port on iPad Pros is modular and connected to the mainboard right around that area that if I press on it, whatever is plugged in suddenly gets recognized. I'm guessing the cable that connects the USB-C port to the mainboard is loose or only half plugged it so that one side of the pins on the USB-C port is dead.
Real shame, as the device is otherwise flawless and has the most evenly lit screen I've ever had on an iPad.
 

AutomaticApple

Suspended
Nov 28, 2018
7,401
3,377
Massachusetts
Something to look out for when you get a new iPad Pro. Got mine last week and wanted to charge it for the first time. Plugged in USB-C cable and...nothing happens. Unplugged and plugged it in the other way...charges immediately. Tried the USB-C cable and charger from my old 2018 iPad Pro, same story. The problem also occurs with all USB-C accessories, from headphone adapter to USB sticks to hard drives. They are all only recognized if plugged in on a specific side of the USB-C plug. So basically, the port acts as if USB-C cables were non-reversible.
By chance, I discovered that if I plug something in "the wrong way" so that it doesn't get recognized, and then exert a small amount of pressure on the iPad's display in an area about an inch above the USB-C port, the connection comes to life.
Based on the iFixit teardown, the USB-C port on iPad Pros is modular and connected to the mainboard right around that area that if I press on it, whatever is plugged in suddenly gets recognized. I'm guessing the cable that connects the USB-C port to the mainboard is loose or only half plugged it so that one side of the pins on the USB-C port is dead.
Real shame, as the device is otherwise flawless and has the most evenly lit screen I've ever had on an iPad.
Your charging port is very likely defective. It seems rare though.
 
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johnwheny

macrumors newbie
Nov 19, 2009
2
0
I am having a terrible time with this problem. MBP 2019 13", 4 Thunderbolt 3 ports. Both ports on the RHS are basically useless. I've done both the "SMT" / "NVRAM" resets (or whatever they're called). I use quality cables. Furious that I forked out £2k for a machine that should be perfect only to have this sort of crap to deal with.
 

eLeX69

macrumors newbie
Apr 11, 2020
5
1
Something to look out for when you get a new iPad Pro. Got mine last week and wanted to charge it for the first time. Plugged in USB-C cable and...nothing happens. Unplugged and plugged it in the other way...charges immediately. [...] So basically, the port acts as if USB-C cables were non-reversible.


Hi @steve96815,

I have got the exact same problem for 3 weeks now with my 2018 iPad Pro. And I am confirming the exact same behavior when exerting some small pressure on the display (thanks immensely for the tip ? by the way!).

I called Apple right before we all got stuck at home and they recommended I should bring it to the Genius Bar... once it reopens. Have you had any luck with this issue since then and have you got in touch with Apple or any other expert?

(I am also confirming it does not have anything to do with the cable unfortunately. I was able to use my (Apple) USB-c cable successfully on a friend’s iPad Pro. I also tested 2 other spare (third-party provider) USB-c cables: I am getting the very same issue.)
 

steve96815

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Sep 7, 2009
19
5
Hi @steve96815,

I have got the exact same problem for 3 weeks now with my 2018 iPad Pro. And I am confirming the exact same behavior when exerting some small pressure on the display (thanks immensely for the tip ? by the way!).

I called Apple right before we all got stuck at home and they recommended I should bring it to the Genius Bar... once it reopens. Have you had any luck with this issue since then and have you got in touch with Apple or any other expert?

(I am also confirming it does not have anything to do with the cable unfortunately. I was able to use my (Apple) USB-c cable successfully on a friend’s iPad Pro. I also tested 2 other spare (third-party provider) USB-c cables: I am getting the very same issue.)
I contacted Apple Support and reported my problem and observations. They stated the USB-C port is defective and would need to be repaired. Since Apple Stores and their Genius Bars are still closed, the only repair option they were able to offer was to take it to one of the few authorized service providers that still operate. However, since I caught the issue while I was still within my 14 day return window, they suggested I simply return it and they would mail a replacement which should arrive next week.
As the USB-C port component is modular, it can likely be repaired in stores once they open again, but since it was a brand new device, I preferred returning it for a new one rather than having them open it up and fix it.
As for the issue itself, I have only found one other report from a user who bought a used 2018 iPad Pro on Amazon. It is probably not a widespread issue, though some people may not realize it for a long time if you happen to always plug your cable in "the right way". I still suspect this issue is a result of the cable that connects the USB-C port to the logicboard becoming loose. It is a flat cable with two rows of pins. Each row probably connects to one side of the pins on the actual USB-C port. If that cable becomes loose on one side, it would explain why only one side is "alive" and why pressing on the screen makes the other side come alive as well.
 

eLeX69

macrumors newbie
Apr 11, 2020
5
1
I contacted Apple Support and reported my problem and observations. They stated the USB-C port is defective and would need to be repaired.

Thanks for the detailed response. I did notice on very few occasions earlier this year that my iPad had not charged properly. But I systematically thought it was my mistake for not plugging the cable correctly or using a malfunctioning plug at the office. My iPad Pro came with a two-year warranty so I expect the vendor here to fix it (I am assuming they will simply return it to Apple as it seems by no means an easy fix)... whenever I am able to leave home.
Thanks once more for getting back to me. It does look like a rare issue indeed but I am equally suspecting that a number of people may not pay close attention enough to the problem as it does not prevent the device from working properly as long as you insert your cable... the « right way ». ?
 

Beaverman3001

macrumors 6502a
May 20, 2010
554
55
My mother’s ipad had a fault port out of the box, totally unusuable, zero power or data. Apple tried to force her to repair it. She called, said they would replace it, but then sent her a repair kit. Had to complain to support to get them to return and ship a brand new one, one of the worst experiences I’ve had with apple support. These ports are probably going to be the new ”gate” for this generation ipad.
 
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fcarter

macrumors newbie
May 21, 2020
4
1
FWIW, albeit a bit late to the game, my wife's iPad has started exhibiting a similar symptom. At this stage, the only way to charge (or locally back up) is to use the cable that came with the iPad (Pro, 11") in a certain orientation, inserted VERY firmly, connected to my MacBook Pro (only thing we have with USB C ports).

  • I've cleaned the port & cable of any debris,
  • tried other cables known to work (e.g. the charging cable for the MacBook Pro)
  • tried USB 3 -> USB C cables with a known good charger & with other MacBook's
This morning, symptom was no connection at all. Rebooted, no change. Hard reboot, no change. Upgraded iOS to 13.5 -- this changed symptom from "no recognition of cable" to "brief flash of "charging" then "not charging."

Futzed more, used plastic toothpick from Swiss Army knife to remove dust. Later, could (sometimes) get a firm plug insertion to work iff the cord is oriented a certain way. It still doesn't recognize the charger. But this 1) allowed us to charge, and 2) we got a local backup should replacement prove necessary.

AppleCare+ expires in December, so if apple's every actually available again, should be able to get things worked out.

Planning on contacting support tomorrow to see if they can be convinced to do a ship/return replacement.

Again, FWIW.

(Note: I tried the "press on screen" in the general area of the port. No luck. Requires just the right insertion (at which point it pops up immediately with the charging notification).

/fred
 

fcarter

macrumors newbie
May 21, 2020
4
1
I'll add an update. Online chat with Apple support. Though they tried to ship me a cable, then take iPad for 2 weeks, ultimate results is they're sending a new one (i'll return the other).

Addendum to symptoms. Thought the machine charges via my MacBook Pro, that machine now complains that all USB work has been disable because one device (the only that's charging) is drawing too much current. So seems that replacement is in order...
 

hrygrfn

macrumors newbie
Jul 2, 2015
1
1
brooklyn
Same issue with my 12” iPad Pro. On the line with Apple Support and they are quoting me $649 as it’s recently out of warranty.
 
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Beyondthatbluedoor

macrumors newbie
Jul 6, 2020
1
1
Swindon, England
Could not believe reading this. I have just bought (from Apple) A usb c to sd card reader as I though the one I got from eBay (cheap) was broken. But not so... the Apple one has the same issue. Then I turned it around & hey presto it works & so does the eBay 1. So a faulty port. This iPad PRO is Only 7 months old & will be returned. THANKS FOR THIS
 
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eLeX69

macrumors newbie
Apr 11, 2020
5
1
Update to my previous post: I brought my iPad Pro back to the shop where I had bought it. They sent it to Apple for repair (it was still under warranty). They have just returned a replacement instead. Special thanks to steve96815 for creating this post in the first place and providing precious information!
 
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4482682

macrumors newbie
Aug 7, 2020
1
0
me too, ipad 2020 11" cellular
cant take to genius bar

this is disheartening considering 1200$
found it when trying to use a hub and noticed my wired headphones didnt work with oem apple adapter
 

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Mr. DNA

macrumors newbie
Aug 12, 2020
1
0
Sacramento, CA
Same issue with my new iPad Pro 2020. Bought like three dongles before coming to the sad realization that I had paid $1200+ for a spotty-at-best USB-C port. Was going to call Apple about it but based on this thread and similar ones I’ve been following, I think I’ll save myself the time and just try to get it repaired at an authorized repair place if I can find one that’s open. As I type this, my charger has been unplugged for over 10 minutes and my control center says it’s still charging. I’ve always defended Apple to my peers, and have been using, working from and producing on MacOS and iOS throughout many generations of iPod, iPhone, iPad, iMac, and MacBook Pro. Feeling pretty let down by one of the few companies I put *some* amount of trust in. ?
 

seadragon

Contributor
Mar 10, 2009
1,871
3,150
I’ve read comments somewhere (maybe here on MR) that the openings in the aluminum for the USB-C ports on the MacBooks enlarge over time and the connections become loose. Is that the case here?
 
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