Apple Explains USB-C on iPhone 15: What You Need to Know

Apple detailed the new USB-C connector featured in its iPhone 15 series devices, that have replaced the legacy Lightning connector.

The universally accepted USB-C standard allows for charging, data syncing, and audio and video playback. The connector is compatible with a range of devices, including Mac, iPad, and AirPods Pro (2nd generation). Apple’s switch to USB-C was likely accelerated due to the European Union requiring USB-C next year for devices.

Apple shared a support document on Friday detailing all about iPhone 15 devices and USB-C (via MacRumors). Here’s what you need to know…

Charging Capabilities

Users can charge their iPhone 15 with a USB-C cable and power adapter that are compliant with the USB-C standard. “Connect the cable to the USB-C connector on your iPhone and to a compatible USB-C power adapter. Then plug the power adapter into a wall outlet,” Apple instructed. For faster charging, a 20W or higher-wattage USB-C power adapter can be used.

Data Transfer and Connectivity

The iPhone 15 series allows for data transfer to iPads, Macs, and other computers via a USB-C cable. “Your iPhone will charge while connected to these devices,” Apple noted. The iPhone 15 Pro and iPhone 15 Pro Max models support fast USB 3.2 Gen 2 speeds up to 10Gbit per second with an optional USB 3 cable (that you’ll have to buy on your own).

Charging Other Devices

The iPhone 15 can also charge other devices like AirPods and Apple Watch at up to 4.5 watts. Devices with a Lightning connector can be charged using an Apple USB-C to Lightning cable. This is so great that you can finally use your iPhone to charge other devices and accessories.

Audio and Display Connectivity

For iPhone 15 series audio, users have the option to connect to AirPods or other Bluetooth devices, or use the USB-C connector for wired headphones. The iPhone 15 series can also connect to external displays at up to 4K resolution and 60Hz. “iPhone also supports high-dynamic-range USB-C displays,” Apple added. The company updated its AirPods Pro 2 and wired EarPods with USB-C, with the latter priced at $25.

Additional Device Compatibility

The USB-C connector allows for connections to CarPlay-compatible cars, external storage devices, monitors, microphones, and more. The iPhone 15 Pro models also support recording ProRes video directly to an external storage device at up to 4K at 60 frames per second.

Cable and Adapter Requirements

Apple warned that devices and cables not compliant with the USB-C standard might not work as expected and could interfere with wireless connections. “The USB-C cable that comes with your iPhone supports charging and USB 2 speeds,” the company stated.

The company’s proprietary Lightning connector had a good run of 11 years, but now it’s time to embrace USB-C on the iPhone for the first time. Apple’s iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Pro devices launch on Friday, September 22, 2023.

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