Apple recently clarified the licensing requirement for the Mini DisplayPort connector currently used in all portable Macs and the 24-inch Cinema Display.
Courtesy of Apple
If youíre interested in building devices that use the Mini DisplayPort connectors, you can do so after agreeing to an evaluation license that provides documentation about the physical characteristics of the connectors, as well as layout guidelines.
If after evaluating the Mini DisplayPort you wish to use the connector, you would apply for a free Implementation License for worldwide use.
This simple, free, and remarkably straightforward licensing agreement should open up development and manufacturing of products that use Mini DisplayPort connectors. In the short term, I expect to see adapters for converting the Mini DisplayPort to other video connection types. Later, we may see Mini DisplayPort connections showing up in third-party monitors as well as video graphics cards.
Itís interesting to note that Apple didnít invent the DisplayPort standard, which was ratified by the Video Electronics Standards Association (VESA) in early 2006. Apple used the VESA DisplayPort standard to engineer a smaller, more compact version specifically for small form factor devices, such as portable computers.