Apple drops 24 percent off cost of a cable you really need

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A USB-C Lightning cable price drop.
A USB-C Lightning cable has several uses, including faster charges for recent iPhone and iPad models.
Photo: Apple

The price of a USB-C Lightning cable dropped 24 percent. That’s good news to almost every iPhone and iPad user.

This cable really should be bundled with Apple’s phone and tablet. It offers faster charging, and is required for connectivity with the latest macOS devices.

There’s only one authorized USB-C Lightning cable, and it’s sold by Apple. Previously this was $25, but it’s now $19. This doesn’t appear to be a special price, but a permanent price reduction.

After this change, the USB-C Lightning cable costs the same as Apple’s old USB-A Lightning cable.

Faster charging

One would think the cable and wall adapter that comes bundled with an iPhone or iPad is the fastest way to charge them. That’s a reasonable assumption, but it’s still wrong.

All the 2017 iOS device support Fast Charge, enabling them to get as much as a 50 percent charge in half an hour. This requires a USB-C cable and adapter, and Apple bundles older and slower USB-A cables and chargers instead.

Of course, Fast Charge requires not just the right cable but also a USB-C wall adapter. Apple sells these in 29W, 61W, and 87W capacities.

Apple is reportedly going to bundle a USB-C Lightning cable and adapter with the 2018 iPhone models.

MacBook compatibility

Even if you don’t have an iPhone new enough to take advantage of Fast Charging, this USB-C Lightning cable is also necessary to connect a MacBook or MacBook Pro to any iOS device.

As mentioned, Apple ships the iPhone and iPad within a USB-A Lightning cable, and these laptops have only USB-C ports.

A USB-C to USB-A adapter is also a possibility, but these can cost as much as Apple’s cable.