Q Sadly, when our much-loved iPad was charging on the floor, someone walked past and gave the docking cable a slight knock, causing damage to the cable – which is cheap to replace – and the last two pins at the far right of the 30-pin docking port (when viewed with the display side up). I have managed to re-align and re-seat these, but does my iPad now need an expensive hardware repair?
A Although you should get an Apple engineer to look carefully at this, it is not likely to have any functional effect.
The pins on the far right of the port are numbers 29 and 30, which are FireWire ground lines. Unless you connect your iPad to a docking device that uses those lines, or the connectors short out against other pins, they should neither be used nor affect your iPad. If the two pins cross one another, as they are both grounds, that should not have any adverse effect either.
This is much less unfortunate than damaging the first pins at the left end of the socket, pins 1 and 2, which are essential ground lines for the iPad, and could be much more serious.
Updated from the original, which was first published in MacUser volume 27 issue 16, 2011.