Apple’s highly anticipated flagship phones of the year, the iPhone 15 and 15 Pro series, are finally here. If you are someone who is planning to upgrade from an older iPhone to the iPhone 15, you are in for a surprise when you open the box. The biggest upgrade introduced in the iPhone 15 series is the new charging port. Yes, the older Lightning port is now gone and has been replaced by a USB-C port, the so-called Android charging port, on the iPhone 15 (read review) and 15 Pro models.
With the introduction of the USB-C port, Apple has unified its device ecosystem, allowing you to charge your iPhone, AirPods Pro, and MacBook via a single cable. Additionally, the USB C upgrade also enables faster charging and data transfer speeds than a lightning cable, but there’s a catch. Many of you are probably also wondering: can you use an Android USB-C cable to charge the iPhone 15? In this article we have discussed everything there is to know about the USB-C port on the iPhone 15 and 15 Pro series. So let’s dive in!
What made Apple switch from Lightning Port to USB-C?
While Apple wants buyers to believe that it made this switch to unify the charging system across the entire Apple ecosystem, the truth is that Apple was forced to make this switch. Previously, Apple had always been reluctant to make this switch because it wanted to offer its own Lightning charging port on iPhones. But the The EU’s common charger directive took over this decision from Apple, making it ‘mandatory’ for them to make the switch.
The new EU legislation requires that all small to medium-sized devices, such as smartphones, tablets, cameras and even portable gaming consoles, must use a common charging solution by 2024, namely USB-C charging. Although the law applies to regions in the EU Only, it wouldn’t be a good (or even profitable) idea for Apple to sell iPhones with a USB-C port only in the EU and with Lightning ports in other regions .
That’s why, thanks to the EU, we’re now getting an iPhone range that can be charged using the same cable as our MacBooks, Android phones or modern Windows laptops.
USB-C on iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Plus: what’s new
The transition from Lightning to USB-C port on the iPhone 15 and 15 Plus comes down to convenience, as you now have the freedom to use the same charging cable across different Apple devices. You no longer have to ask your friends if they have the iPhone charging cable. But Apple, in typical Apple fashion, only has added support for the USB 2.0 standard on the iPhone 15 and 15 Plus models, while even most mid-range Android counterparts offer USB 3.0 support.
This limitation limits the data transfer speed on the iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Plus to a maximum of 480 Mbps, which is nowhere near what you get on the iPhone 15 Pro and 15 Pro Max. More about this below.
USB-C on iPhone 15 Pro and 15 Pro Max: what’s new
This is where things get exciting, as the USB C charging port on the iPhone 15 Pro and 15 Pro Max offers USB 3.0 support. This means that the data transfer speed you get on the iPhone 15 Pro models is the same about 20 times faster than the transfer speeds on the iPhone 15 and 15 Plus models, as both premium models offer transfer speeds of up to 10 Gbps.
Also, the availability of USB 3.0 support on the iPhone 15 and 15 Pro Max makes a lot more sense, as both models can capture 48-megapixel ProRAW images and 4K 60FPS video, both of which can result in large data files that require fast storage. connection to transfer them from the phone’s storage to a Mac or hard drive.
iPhone 15 and 15 Plus USB-C charging speed
When it comes to charging speeds, Apple was already far behind its Android counterparts, and unfortunately the situation hasn’t changed much, even with the addition of a new USB C port on the iPhone 15 and 15 Plus. Both non-Pro iPhone 15 models have the same loading speed as their predecessors, namely a maximum charging speed of 20 W.
In terms of wired charging, the iPhone 15 lost ground 0 to 53% in 30 minutes in our tests, which is even slightly better than Apple’s claims of 0-50% in the same time frame.
iPhone 15 Pro and 15 Pro Max USB-C charging speed
While we saw a huge improvement in terms of data transfer speed, thanks to USB 3.0 support on the iPhone 15 Pro and 15 Pro Max, this is unfortunately not the case with charging speeds.
Just like the non-Pro models, the iPhone 15 Pro and 15 Pro Max also have the same charging speed as their predecessors, namely a maximum of 27W. In our internal testing, we saw the iPhone 15 Pro Max charge at up to 25.4W when using the 61W MacBook Pro charger. During our testing, the iPhone 15 Pro Max charged from 0-55% in 30 minutes.
iPhone 15 and 15 Pro reverse charging explained
All models in the iPhone 15 series have a new feature, which is support for wired reverse charging. You can now use the iPhone 15 and 15 Pro models to charge other devices such as AirPods, Apple Watch, the Magic Mouse, Magic Keyboard, and other similar devices. You can even charge your older iPhones with Lightning ports and even Android phones using a USB-C to Lightning and a USB-C to C cable respectively.
Additionally, the iPhone (or Android phone) with a higher battery charge will charge the other device with a lower battery charge, regardless of the iPhone 15 model you are using. This wired reverse charging support on iPhone 15 series is capped at 4.5W.
Does the iPhone 15 come with a charger and cable in the box?
With the transition from Lightning to USB C on the iPhone 15 and 15 Plus, both models come with a USB-C cable in the box, and that’s pretty much all you get in the box. So those switching to an iPhone for the first time will have to buy Apple’s 20W USB-C charger separately. Or you can use your existing Android charger if it comes with USB PD (power delivery) support.
Unfortunately, even Apple’s premium iPhone models, the iPhone 15 Pro and 15 Pro Max, don’t come with a charger in the box. You only get a new USB-C braided cable with the Pro models. There’s a big disappointment here, though, as the included USB-C cable doesn’t support USB 3.0, meaning you won’t be able to experience faster data transfer speeds on your iPhone 15 Pro or 15 Pro Max, even with the included USB C cable. To get 10 Gbps data transfer speeds on your iPhone 15 Pro or 15 Pro Max, you can use a USB-C 3.0 cable for iPhone 15 Pro from the list linked here.
USB-C port for iPhone 15: easy charging
The USB-C port on the iPhone 15 series isn’t necessarily a groundbreaking feature, but it’s something most users will appreciate. Thanks to EU legislation, you no longer need to take separate chargers with you if you own an Android device and an iPhone 15 (Pro). Reverse charging is another great addition from Apple, as you can use it to charge your Apple Watch, AirPods, or other TWS earbuds.
|iPhone 15||iPhone 15 Plus||iPhone 15 Pro||iPhone 15 Pro Max|
|Speed of data transfer||480Mbps||480Mbps||10Gbps||10Gbps|
|Charging speed||53% in 30 minutes (in our tests)||50% in 35 minutes||50% in 30 minutes||55% in 30 minutes (in our tests)|
|USB 3.o support||No||No||Yes||Yes|
|Fast charging support||No||No||Yes (25W)||Yes (25W)|
However, Apple being Apple, it has even put a paywall on data transfer speed by not including a USB-C 3.0 cable with the Pro models, which is disappointing. Nevertheless, the move to the USB-C port on iPhones is a welcome change. What are your thoughts on this? Let us know in the comments below.