Best USB-C accessories for Macs and iOS devices

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Anker PowerCore+ 20100 USB-C
USB-C battery packs, chargers, hard drives, cables and hubs will future-proof newer Macs.
Photo: Anker

USB Type C — it’s no longer a novelty but an emerging connectivity standard for Apple products. As a newer, more powerful variation of the same USB we all know and love (well, kinda), USB-C features higher power and faster data transfer than its predecessors via a smaller connector.

While older USB Type A and B were a great gift for Mac users — few mourned the passing of ADB and SCSI — USB is often finicky. Just plugging in an old-school USB cable can prove challenging, since you must position the connector just so for it to slide smoothly into the port. That often means several tries to achieve the proper angle and orientation.

Those obstacles disappear with USB-C because, in addition to its smaller size, it is designed to be reversible — with no up or down orientation, just like a Lightning cable — and the cables can have the same type of connector on both ends.

Should Apple swap Lightning for USB-C? [Friday Night Fights]

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friday_night_fights
Which would you prefer?
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

A recent rumor claimed Apple could swap its Lightning port for USB-C connectivity with iPhone 8 later this year. That’s already been debunked by one reliable analyst, but is it a move Apple should consider making in the foreseeable future?

Friday Night Fights bugLightning and USB-C both have their pros and cons. One has been around since iPhone 5 and we’re all familiar with it; the other is an open standard that anyone can use, which makes accessories, cables, and peripherals more affordable.

Join us in this week’s Friday Night Fight as we battle it out over whether Apple should give Lightning the boot in 2017.

What to expect at Apple’s ‘Hello again’ Mac event

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MacBook Pro
Are you excited for the Magic of the OLED Toolbar?
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

It’s been more than 500 days since the last MacBook Pro release, but Apple’s
“Hello again” Mac event will change that this week.

So what should you be expecting to see? Here’s a rundown of everything we predict Apple will reveal at the eagerly anticipated event, which takes place Thursday at Apple’s 1 Infinite Loop campus.

Lightning envy: Next-gen USB enters production with reversible design

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A concept of what a Lightning-to-USB Type-C cable would look like.
A concept of what a Lightning-to-USB Type-C cable would look like.

We’ve known for awhile that the next version of USB will copy Apple’s Lightning connector with a reversible design. Now the next-gen connector is ready for production, which means you’ll start seeing it in new desktops, laptops, tablets, phones and accessories.

Today the USB 3.0 Promoter Group announced that work on the new design, called USB Type-C, is done and ready to be implemented.