That didn't take long. Just a week after the debut of the iPhone 5 and its much-discussed Lightning port, accessory maker CableJive has announced a new adapter, the DockBoss+ iPhone 5 Kit, that makes it possible to connect the new phone to speaker docks made for Apple's older 30-pin dock connector.
The $30 DockBoss+ iPhone 5 Kit is a 2.5-foot cable with a female 30-pin dock connector on one end for connecting to older speaker docks and similar audio accessories. At the other end are two connections: USB and minijack (3.5mm stereo audio). If you've got a speaker system that supports digital audio from the dock-connector port, you just connect your iPhone's USB-to-Lightning cable to the DockBoss+'s USB port for charging and audio.
If you've got a 30-pin speaker dock that grabs analog audio from the dock-connector port--this includes many older systems, and a good number of inexpensive recent systems--the DockBoss+ works there, too. First you connect the iPhone's USB-to-Lightning cable to the DockBoss+'s USB port, then you connect the included audio cable from your iPhone's headphone jack to the DockBoss+'s audio minijack. (See the video below for a demonstration.)
Apple offers a $29 Lightning to 30-pin Adapter and a $39 0.2-meter cable version, but neither of those accessories are available yet. The DockBoss+ iPhone 5 Kit is the first such adapter we've seen--surely the first of many--that is actually available for purchase and is shipping to customers.
Owners of older docking stations may find CableJive's solution inelegant, as one of the reason to own a dock, after all, is to avoid stringing cables around on shelves and desktops. But if you just shelled out $200 or more for a new iPhone 5, you might decide that buying an adapter cable is cheaper than buying a new Lightning-connector-equipped dock--and quicker than waiting for those docks to appear on the market.
Senior editor Dan Frakes contributed to this report.