The Cigarette Plug Must Die!

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by SomeDudeAsking, Jan 16, 2011.

  1. SomeDudeAsking macrumors 65816

    Nov 23, 2010
    So after spending some time on eBay and MonoPrice searching for (non-gouging priced) Apple cables and cable adapters, I've come to realize that the cigarette plugs in cars must die. It is outdated, old fashioned, enormous in size, and unwieldy to use. No self-respecting person smokes in this day and age and it would do car manufacturers good to just ditch it and provide a standard USB port or regular wall socket. It makes a huge amount of environmental waste for nothing and forces people to all types of unwieldy cables.
  2. Mickyfin macrumors 6502


    Jan 24, 2010
    I agree with you, and USB ports should be fitted to all cars now instead, but in the meantime, you can get short fitting USB ports that convert the cigar lighter in any car to USB.
  3. KentuckyHouse macrumors 68020


    Jan 29, 2010
    Lexington, KY.
    I couldn't agree more. I've never understood why car manufacturers don't just put one or two 12v plugs in cars. Granted, I'm no electrical engineer, so I may just be talking out of my a$$, but it seems like it would be simple enough to do.

    Interestingly enough, I've found that the cigarette lighter thing in my work truck ('08 Ford F-150) won't power my iPhone charger, but rather I have to use the 12v outlet (that's there for charging things such as a phone or radar detector or whatever). I have no idea why that is, but the cig thing just won't charge the phone.

    Can anyone shed some light on why there aren't just standard wall plugs in cars these days? I wouldn't expect them to push as much power as a real wall plug, but to have the ability to use your wall plug in the car would be much simpler.

    *edit* Or USB connections, as mentioned above. I just kinda skipped over that part,
  4. Truckondo macrumors regular

    Jun 4, 2009
    My guess the reason they don't put many 12v outlets in cars is because people will start hooking hair dryers and microwaves that pull alot of amps. I wonder what happens when they hook up a power strip!
  5. digitard macrumors 6502a


    Sep 15, 2004
    Gilbert, AZ
    In my Durango the plug is labelled "Power Outlet" and neither the front or rear came w/ the actual cigarette lighter.

    I had completely forgotten about the USB plugs. Good reminder as I'm going to make a drive to Cali to take the kids to Disneyland in a month so I'll want to be able to stream Pandora a good portion and keep my charge.
  6. Dalton63841 macrumors 65816


    Nov 27, 2010
    You do understand that smoking is an addiction and is actually pretty dificcult to quit right?

    That being said I do agree that the cigarette lighter should be removed from automobiles. Seriously, it is huge clunky and could be better replaced with usb/plugin adapter. What smoker doesn't have a freakin regular cigarette lighter?
  7. Goldinboy17 macrumors 65816


    Jun 21, 2010
    San Francisco, Ca
    Which is why one should never have started in the first place. It being assisting doesn't exactly excuse the fact. Unless you started back when there wasn't as much information regarding smoking, there really exists no excuse. But in regard to the topic, I don't see why they couldn't simply just place one or two USB slots in a car. I can't imagine they would be a huge drain.
  8. anim8or macrumors 65816


    Aug 16, 2006
    Scotland, UK
    While I agree that a change to a USB would be great... I totally disagree on adding an actual power socket as this would provide a nightmare for car manufacturers due to the fact that once cars are exported they would need the outlet changed to match the shape and voltage of the power outlet of the destination country!!
  9. Love macrumors 68000


    Jan 20, 2007
    Just southeast of Northwestshire
    How many cars these days actually have the lighter and not just the outlet?
  10. Mac.World macrumors 68000


    Jan 9, 2011
    In front of uranus
    Not so simple. Which plug would you use? There are more than just American style plug outlets and they all vary in size. Ever seen the size of a British plug? Should car manufacturers go from a standard small cigarette plug and individualize each car sold in the US, Germany, Spain, UK, Romania, etc? It's simply not practical. Additionally, tons and tons of people in old eastern block countries and Asia smoke. Remember, the world does not revolve around the U.S.

    USB plugs are a nice idea, but USB is likely on its way out in favor of lightpeak, if Intel has its way. Hard to justify the costs, but not a bad idea.

    It would be nice if worldwide standards were used for electronics, but until then, the cigarette outlet in cars will remain for charging purposes... and gasp, lighting cigarettes.
  11. Fliesen macrumors 6502a


    Mar 30, 2010
    as some have pointed out already:

    1.: the 'cigarette plug' doesn't come with an actual lighter anymore, nowadays, but is actually the standardized 'power outlet' used within cars which is, contrary to wall power outlets, identical in cars used around the globe (cmiiw)

    2.: [​IMG]
    problem solved.
  12. Ballis macrumors 6502a

    May 27, 2008
    Oslo, Norway
    Hardly a big deal. The Brits have the stearing wheel on the wrong side and Americans have miles on their speedometer. God knows what the Chineese are doing. The car manufactorers cope.
  13. Stealthipad, Jan 17, 2011
    Last edited: Jan 17, 2011

    Stealthipad macrumors 68040


    Apr 30, 2010
    Many of the newer vehicle have USB, heck my LX570 even has FACTORY 110v AC outlet. I ue my usb port for charging all the time.:p
  14. Southern Dad macrumors 68000

    Southern Dad

    May 23, 2010
    Shady Dale, Georgia
    Both of my vehicles have additional 12v outlets. The Lincoln Navigator has one in the virgin ashtray (which when opened is the perfect stand for an iPad), one on the passenger side front and one on the passenger side by back door. My Ford Thunderbird actually has two placed symmetrically on the dash. I guess they didn't want to have a round outlet on one side and not the other.

    A neighbor has a pickup truck that actually has a 110v outlet in it from the factory!
  15. iPhysicist macrumors 65816


    Nov 9, 2009
    I do not think so but, ok. I never used a car cigarette lighter so I wont miss this feature.

    Greetings from a cyclist, jogger, climber and and hopefully self-respecting smoker ;)
  16. maflynn Moderator


    Staff Member

    May 3, 2009
    Who are you to judge what others do with their lives. The same thing can be said for alcohol abuse, taking drugs, eating too much red meat, having too much salt in their diets, eating hot dogs (nitrates), drinking soda (HFCs), etc.

    so you see, there are many things in today's age that are considered harmful and while cigarette smoking is harmful, it is a personal choice.

    Personally given the number of adapters (not just for computers) that take advantage of the cigarette lighter plug, I see little reason why it should go.
  17. Kauai macrumors 6502a

    Oct 13, 2010
    I'm fine if people want to smoke somewhere other than public spaces. Also, there is some new data that seems to suggest that smoking can cause damage in minutes which is all the less reason for me to ever start killing myself early.

    Any way. My Grandmother use to have this thing that you could plug into the cigarette lighter and it would give you a full electrical socket. So I could charge my laptop and everything. I'm curious, is there any way USB could charge things like laptops or is there simply not enough voltage?
  18. Stealthipad macrumors 68040


    Apr 30, 2010
    You can still buy low powered inverters that will run your laptop or other lowered powered device for under $50 at a computer store.

    USB outlets are rather low powered and would never charge the battery of a laptop but will and DO charge a smaller device like a cell phone, etc which has a much smaller battery.

  19. GoCubsGo macrumors Nehalem


    Feb 19, 2005
    You can buy an inverter. That's how I charge my camera batteries in the go.
  20. Xenc macrumors 65816


    May 8, 2010
    London, England
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  21. TruckdriverSean macrumors 6502a

    Feb 28, 2009
    Texas, US
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    The nice thing about the old lighter plug is that it provides the standard 12 volts (13.8v in an 18wheeler) that comes from the battery. So there's no need to install an inverter that gets hot and can't supply the amount of current you might expect it to.

    12v lighter plugs are also very, very common and are standard everywhere.

    The large internal size of the plug also makes it a very convenient location to hide the components to bring the voltage down to what your device requires (like the USB adapter above).

    Not that I wouldn't mond more USB ports, but the old lighter plug isn't all bad.
  22. NathanA macrumors 6502a

    Feb 9, 2008
    Hah, talk about good timing: I just happened to notice what is selling today. :p

    -- Nathan
  23. Interstella5555 macrumors 603


    Jun 30, 2008
    Yet somehow it's socially acceptable to shove fast food down your throat 7 days a week without ever exercising.
  24. Dalton63841 macrumors 65816


    Nov 27, 2010
    Thank you! I smoke. I'm not proud of it, but I do. Is the smoker who exercises and takes care of his body less healthy than the average person who doesn't smoke, but does nothing but veg out?

    I have tried to quit, but if you don't smoke then you have NO idea how hard it is to quit, especially when everyone around me smokes.

    But yea, I don't use the car lighter, never have used it. It has always served as a charger for various electronics...

    Well said!
  25. Interstella5555 macrumors 603


    Jun 30, 2008
    You too, I smoke but am an avid ultimate frisbee player, walk and take public transport 99% of the places I go, and rarely use the elevator in my place, home cook most of my food and eat fast food maybe once every 3 months and yet somehow get judged for having an unhealthy lifestyle? If you say so...

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