IPhone 5s portable charger. JoyGeek Wireless Charging Station

Apple is changing the charging port with iPhone 15, but it won’t be like the last time

When Apple unveils the iPhone 15 line in early next month, it will also announce the first charging port change since the iPhone 5. For a lot of iPhone users, however, nothing will change with how the iPhone is charged this time.

In retrospect, it’s a little hard to believe that Apple only made five iPhone models that used the original charging port. Launched 16 years ago, the original iPhone used the same 30-pin connector charging port as the iPod line.

By the time Apple’s 30-pin connector came to the iPhone, it was an okay charging option. The plug only connected when facing forward, but it no longer locked into place with teeth on either side.

Apple only ever shipped this charging port on the iPhone, iPhone 3G, iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, and iPhone 4S. Still, the public reaction when the iPhone 5 switched to the current Lightning port was not exactly positive in 2012.

That’s largely because 30-pin connector adoption had a head start due to the popularity of the iPod. It didn’t help that Apple’s 30-pin to Lightning adapter was in short supply when the iPhone 5 launched.


While it’s true that the iPhone hasn’t changed its charging port in over a decade, that might not be how customers see it.

Apple began shipping a USB-C to Lightning cable in the box with the iPhone 11 Pro to unlock faster charging. iPhone 5 through the iPhone XS (and non-Pro 11) came with a USB-A to Lightning cable. Apple also included the charging brick in the box.

A year later, Apple stopped including the power adapter in the box to save the planet and replaced USB-A to Lightning with USB-C to Lightning for iPhone 12. If the two people who have borrowed my iPhone charger in the last month are any indication, iPhone customers are still discovering the perks of faster charging with USB-C to Lightning and a 20W power adapter.

USB-C remains “the new plug” for Apple despite first adopting it on a new product in 2015.

Top comment by ChrisReid

Yeah, for the most part, this transition shouldn’t be too bad. It’s been five years since iPads started transitioning and eight since MacBooks first got USB C. Everything from Nintendo Switches to Xbox Controllers and innumerable other electronic devices charge with it now, so I suspect there’s more people who will be happy with this change than just wireless charging folks.

But for a lot of iPhone customers (including some 9to5Mac readers), the switch from Lightning to USB-C (whether Apple likes it or not) is a dreadful change. Regardless of what Apple’s other products have done, the Lightning ecosystem is thriving for many. Having to invest in a new charging plug (whether Apple likes it or not) is a headache. We get it.

There’s something different about this charging transition, however. For some iPhone users, what charging port Apple uses makes no difference. Apple could replace Lightning with VGA, and it wouldn’t matter — for charging purposes, that is.

That’s because Apple added, not replaced, a charging method six years ago with wireless charging. iPhone X and iPhone 8 were the first to support the Qi charging standard, and iPhone 12 vastly improved the experience with MagSafe. For some users, the iPhone charging port is merely a service port and lint collector.

There’s probably a lot of crossover between people who use wireless charging and people who are eagerly awaiting USB-C iPhones. Still, for some iPhone customers, the transition from Lightning to USB-C with the iPhone 15 line will make no difference. Just use the same MagSafe charger on your iPhone 15 that you’ve been using since the iPhone 12. That’s not something you could say for the last big iPhone port change.

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Like most battery cases, the power capacity isn’t going to be what you’re going to receive.

This is mostly for 2 reasons. The battery case uses Lithium Polymer batteries and battery cases simply don’t have the same tech to convert power very well. As a result, the real power capacity that your iPhone 5 will be able to receive is about 1,500mAh.

That’s a pretty good power capacity and for the most part, the companies that do make battery cases always have to make sure the initial power capacity of their battery cases must be higher than the smartphone that they need to charge. That’s because that way there’s enough power to be used.

The power capacity of an iPhone 5 is 1440mAh and a power capacity of an iPhone 5s is 1560mAh. As a result, you’ll get 1 full charge for either of those smartphones that you use and that’s mostly what battery cases are useful for.

MaxBoost Atomic S iPhone 5/5s Battery Case 2,400mAh (Output Power Capacity = 1,500mAh)Phone CapacityMaxBoost Atomic S iPhone 5/5s Battery Case Left Over Capacity after One Charge

Output Charging:

There’s not much speed when it comes to recharging an iPhone 5 in general because the max charging speed for the iPhone 5 and 5s is 1 Amp and the charging Output that this battery case can output is 5V/1.0A. As a result, you’re going to be able to charge your iPhone 5 at its max charging speed.

Recharging is done through a Micro-USB input port at the bottom of the battery case and it’s recharged at 5V/1.0A. The battery case itself will recharge to full power in about 2-3 hours since you’re filling up the entirety of 2,400mAh and not just the Output power capacity.

Even though the battery case is capable of charging and recharging itself ( PassThough Charging ) we don’t recommend doing that too often because it can very well cause damage to the battery case by heating it and that can lead to damaging your iPhone 5 as well.


It’s about the same size as the iPhone 5 but of course, it’s larger since it’s a battery case.

It has a length of 5.5 inches, a width of 2.6 inches, and the most important aspect is the thickness of the battery case with it being 0.7 inches. Yes, it is quite thick, and putting the battery case on your iPhone is going to make a difference when you place your iPhone 5 into your

With that said, not much else changes with its design because the battery case just weighs 3 ounces.

Functional Components:

The battery case itself is separated into 2 different pieces. The battery case part where the battery actually is and where you place your iPhone and then there’s the bumper that goes over your iPhone 5 once you have it on the battery case

The Lightning charging head will always be in your iPhone 5 ready to charge it and all that you need to do is just press the power button on the back of the battery case.

There are 4 Blue LED power capacity indicators as well. Also on the back of the battery is a kicked stand that you can take out and your iPhone 5 will be able to stand horizontally.

On the front is where there’s a sound chamber opening, and at the bottom is where there’s the headphone jack that should be used with the Headphone Jack Extender. Also at the bottom is the Micro-USB Input port that is used to recharge the battery case and you can also use it for file sharing with devices like your computer.

Overall, you can use your iPhone 5 the same way you would with a normal case or without a case.

Best Portable Chargers for iPhone SE

A portable charger (aka power bank) can mean the difference between stressing over your iPhone’s battery life. Or being able to use it all day long without worry. The best portable chargers for iPhone SE can all fast charge them from 0-50% in 30 minutes. While also offering enough capacity to keep you going, whether for a busy workday or long trip.

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Looking to charge at home, work, or for travel? Check out Best Fast Chargers for iPhone SE.

Fast Charging iPhone SE

The iPhone SE uses USB Power Delivery (USB PD) as its fast-charging standard. With a USB-C charger offering 18W or more USB PD the phones will start fast charging. Under this mode charging from 0-50% takes around 30 minutes. The remaining 50% takes longer but is still faster using other types of chargers.

The iPhone SE includes a 5W USB power adapter, which charges up to 3 times slower than fast charging allows.


These portable chargers can fit in your jeans But are more comfortable in a jacket Their limited capacity means fewer charges for your phone.

Among the smallest fast charging portable chargers on the market.

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  • Ports: USB-C, USB-A
  • Output: 18W USB-C PD, Quick Charge 3.0
  • Capacity: 5,000mAh
  • iPhone SE: 1.5 charges

Anker 321 Power Bank (PowerCore 5K)

Why We Picked It

A huge battery capacity is convenient, but sometimes you need a small device that you can carry around without a backpack. The 5,200mAh Anker 321 Power Bank fits that need perfectly, especially because it offers both USB-A and USB-C ports.

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Who It’s For

This is ideal for people who care more about portability than capacity. It won’t charge your phone multiple times, but it can still get you through a long day.

Best for Charging Laptops

Anker 737 Power Bank

Why We Picked It

The Anker 737 features 140W output, which means it can charge bigger, more power-hungry devices like a laptop just as effortlessly as it can juice up a phone or tablet.

Who It’s For

If you often need to charge a laptop when you’re nowhere near an outlet, this 24,000mAh backup battery can lower your stress levels. It’s more expensive than other options on this list, so people who tend to charge smaller devices like phones or tablets are better off with the more affordable choices.

Best High-Capacity Power Bank

Otterbox Fast Charger Power Bank

Why We Picked It

Many people know Otterbox for its durable phone cases, but the company is now bringing that expertise to the world of power banks. In addition to its strong build quality, the Otterbox Fast Charger Power Bank has all the key features you need, such as fast charging with PD, both types of USB ports, and several options for battery capacity.

Who It’s For

If you are worried about damaging your backup battery when you travel or commute, this is one of the safest bets. It also comes with a limited lifetime warranty.

Best Solar-Powered Portable Charger

What Size Battery Do You Need?

These days small portable batteries have a capacity of around 5,000mAh, which means they easily fit into your s and still have enough power to fully top up your phone once.

Meanwhile, a 10,000mAh battery can give today’s flagships two full charges. A 20,000mAh battery can charge a flagship four times, or two phones two times. Some power banks have enough juice to power laptops. Of course, a higher capacity often translates to a heavier, larger, and more expensive battery.

Most companies advertise how many times their products can recharge popular phones, but if you want to calculate that number for yourself, RAVPower has a useful guide (Opens in a new window) that can give you an estimate.

In the end, it’s best to assess your typical needs before buying. If your phone hits the red zone by mid-afternoon and you only need enough juice to get you to the end of the workday, a 5,000mAh battery should be plenty.

Cadefu Charging Station

At the time of publishing, the price started at 22.

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