It’s never been less worth it to upgrade to a new iPhone—or any brand new flagship phone, really—because we’re increasingly paying more for gadgets that don’t fix the problems that phones actually have. Maybe that’s why one of the rumors circulating ahead of this fall’s inevitable revamp isn’t even about the phone: it’s about the charger it comes with, one that could make charging faster.
Rumors started on the Chinese social network Weibo that the next generation of iPhones will come with a new 18W, USB-C charger packed in, something much more in line with the kinds of chargers that currently come with most Android phones and capable of delivering more juice than the 5W chargers Apple’s been using for years. These rumors only sound more plausible in the light that Apple has dropped the price of its USB Type-C-to-Lightning cables that would be required to use the new wall warts.
What that actually means is quick charging, a feature that current iPhones technically support but which the 5W chargers they were packaged with do not. Quick charging is nothing new, and has been a selling point of various Android phones, often thanks to the Qualcomm chips they share, which do the technical work of intelligently routing the increased power from a high-watt charger in a way that makes a battery charge quicker without overheating. Apple’s inclusion of a higher-watt charger would bring it up to par on this front, and help do something to ease low-battery anxiety in a world where no company seems interested in making a phone with a meaningfully long battery life.
While a pack-in charger capable of quick charging would certainly be a bonus, it’d also be a silly reason to upgrade your whole phone. If you’ve already got an iPhone 8, 8 Plus, or X, you can get get a faster charge just by updating your cable and charger. A good bet is this Anker USB-C charger and Apple’s official, now discounted USB-C-to-Lightning cable which both fared well in some extensive testing by Gizmodo.
Your phone may never comfortably last more than a day, two at the most, but being able to top off quickly is at least a small comfort.
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