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One of the iPhone 12’s last remaining secrets just leaked

Published Jun 24th, 2020 7:31AM EDT
iPhone 12 Release Date
Image: Zach Epstein for BGR

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  • The iPhone 12 release date is several months away, and the coronavirus pandemic might further complicate Apple’s launch plans.
  • But a new leak has revealed a brand new detail about the upcoming phones, and it was one of the iPhone 12’s last remaining secrets.
  • Apple’s new iPhone 12 series is said to ship with a 20W USB-C power adapter that will be even faster than the iPhone 11’s chargers.

If there’s one Android feature I’ve always envied, that’s support for significantly faster charging than what the iPhone has. It has nothing to do with Android, of course. Any smartphone maker could increase charging speeds on their devices, even Apple. But it’s Android vendors that have pushed wired charging rates in recent years. The fastest tech available comes from Chinese handset maker Oppo, which uses 65W chargers on some of its devices. Others have been developing tech for charging phones with 100W or 120W chargers, but we don’t have commercial solutions for that.

As much as I’d want fast charging like that on iPhone, I already explained why it can actually harm the iPhone experience. That extra power hurts the longevity of the battery, degrading its capacity faster than slower charging speeds. iPhones stay in circulation for much longer than Androids, and battery health is of utmost importance for Apple, especially following the battery-life-related CPU throttling controversy from a few years ago. With that in mind, the iPhone 12 series is rumored to support even faster charging than the iPhone 11 models. But don’t expect Oppo-like charging speeds.

All iPhone 11 models support 18W wired charging, although it’s only the iPhone 11 Pro and 11 Pro Plus that ship with the proper chargers in the box. The cheaper iPhone 11 comes with the same 5W charger that Apple has always used for iPhones.

A leaker who goes by the name of Mr. White on Twitter posted the following images that show a 20W power adapter that’s supposedly made for the iPhone 12:

The charger has a transparent case with no visible markings that associate it to Apple. But the same person followed up with an image that shows the actual charger that will ship with iPhones:

The power adapter appears to have all the necessary markings, even a serial number that’s scratched out. This is a USB-C charger, just like the 18W version. That said, we have no way of confirming it at this time, so treat it as a rumor.

A report a few months ago did claim that Apple will be using GaN chargers for the iPhone 12, which would support higher power and faster charging speeds. Not to mention that GaN power adapters are more compact than traditional ones.

Whether the product is real or not, we’d expect the iPhone 12 Pro models to ship with at least 18W chargers. The cheaper iPhone 12 versions might not get them, so you’ll have to buy your own. But all iPhone 12 versions will likely support the same maximum charging speeds, whether it’s 18W or 20W.

If you already own USB-C power adapters that support speeds over 20W, they can also recharge your iPhone as long as you have a USB-C-to-Lightning cable handy.

The four iPhone 12 models are also expected to offer decent battery life, given what Apple did with the iPhone 11 series. The phones will be unveiled this fall, although the COVID-19 pandemic could alter Apple’s original launch plans. Some devices might hit stores on time in September, but the release date of others could be pushed back to later this fall.

Separately, other rumors say the iPhone 12 phones will not come with wired EarPods in the box this year. Apple is supposedly pushing its wireless AirPods models while preparing for an iPhone version that will not have any ports.

Chris Smith Senior Writer

Chris Smith has been covering consumer electronics ever since the iPhone revolutionized the industry in 2008. When he’s not writing about the most recent tech news for BGR, he brings his entertainment expertise to Marvel’s Cinematic Universe and other blockbuster franchises.

Outside of work, you’ll catch him streaming almost every new movie and TV show release as soon as it's available.

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