Next iPhone could disable fast charging on uncertified USB-C chargers

Posted:
in iPhone edited December 2020
The next iPhone could force its users to to use only USB-IF certified chargers if they want to enable fast charging on their smartphone, a report claims, with uncertified and potentially hazardous chargers limited to charging at a far slower rate.




A future model of iPhone may include support for "C-AUTH," a USB Type-C authentication specification that can verify if connected cables and chargers are certified accessories, reports Macotakara. If true, this will mean anyone who wants to charge their iPhone at the fastest rate will need to buy either official chargers or third-party USB-C chargers that have received the relevant USB PD 3.0 standard certification.

Created by the USB Implementers Forum, which counts Apple as a member, C-AUTH is a system for hardware to cryptographically verify certifications and hardware identities. This has a number of uses, such as helping secure enterprise networks, by potentially allowing only specific devices to connect to each other, and preventing man-in-the-middle attacks.

For consumers, C-AUTH aims to help reduce the number of instances where faulty or poorly constructed chargers or cables can cause damage to devices. By authenticating chargers, the device can confirm it is safe to operate, enabling features like Power Delivery 3.0.

Existing Apple products are capable of connecting to a USB-C charger using a Lightning-to-USB-C cable, enabling fast charging using a 15-Watt power supply. The current implementation also allows for third-party chargers to provide fast-charging, but with relatively few safety checks in place to prevent a potentially hazardous charger from being used for it.

Under the USB PD 3.0 standard, if the charger fails to authenticate via C-AUTH, fast charging at 18 Watts will not be enabled. Instead, the charger will be forced to provide power at or below 2.5 Watts, enabling it to be used for charging, but not at a fast-charging rate.

The C-AUTH protocol was announced in January 2018. It has since spread to many third-party manufacturers' products, and is readily available.

As a member of the USB Implementers Forum, it is highly likely that Apple will apply standards and practices that are created by the group into its products, making its appearance in future iOS devices quite probable. It is also possible it could make an appearance in the fall iPhone refresh, with assorted rumors suggesting an 18-Watt USB-C wall charger may be bundled with this year's devices.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 13
    macxpressmacxpress Posts: 5,184member
    Probably a safe thing to do. I still to this day do not understand why people get these $2 chargers for their phones (iPhone or Android). So I imagine, some are doing the same with the wireless charging too. It's not worth it folks!
    dewmewatto_cobra
  • Reply 2 of 13
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 23,259member
    Gosh, if you ever wanted a direct phone number for an Apple Senior Engineer that's the place to find one. 
  • Reply 3 of 13
    wood1208wood1208 Posts: 2,569member
    You will still find USB-C chargers from Chinese or similar places labeling fast charge capable and works marginally and could blowup your phone.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 4 of 13
    MplsPMplsP Posts: 3,360member
    macxpress said:
    Probably a safe thing to do. I still to this day do not understand why people get these $2 chargers for their phones (iPhone or Android). So I imagine, some are doing the same with the wireless charging too. It's not worth it folks!
    Because they look identical and the average layman has no clue about the electronics and design that go into something that looks quite mundane and simple. I once saw a tear down comparison of USB chargers. The Apple and Samsung chargers were both well constructed. The generic ones cut a ton of corners. 

    I remember at least one well publicized case a few years ago where either an iPhone or the charger caught fire. Turns out it was a cheap charger that caused the problem. 

    racerhomie3watto_cobra
  • Reply 5 of 13
    asciiascii Posts: 5,941member
    It's a good idea if the cost of a certificate is just enough to cover the testing process, but if they try to make it in to a money making exercise it will put the cost up for everyone. Cables can be surprisingly expensive already.
  • Reply 6 of 13
    DangDaveDangDave Posts: 71member
    I think the article meant to say at or below 12 Watts, not 2.5 Watts?
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 7 of 13
    mike1mike1 Posts: 2,782member
    MplsP said:
    macxpress said:
    Probably a safe thing to do. I still to this day do not understand why people get these $2 chargers for their phones (iPhone or Android). So I imagine, some are doing the same with the wireless charging too. It's not worth it folks!
    Because they look identical and the average layman has no clue about the electronics and design that go into something that looks quite mundane and simple. I once saw a tear down comparison of USB chargers. The Apple and Samsung chargers were both well constructed. The generic ones cut a ton of corners. 

    I remember at least one well publicized case a few years ago where either an iPhone or the charger caught fire. Turns out it was a cheap charger that caused the problem. 

    I bought it for $3 at the 7-11 checkout. It must be good. Right?
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 8 of 13
    Mike WuertheleMike Wuerthele Posts: 6,275administrator
    DangDave said:
    I think the article meant to say at or below 12 Watts, not 2.5 Watts?
    If you're referring to a failed C-AUTH authentication, 2.5W is correct.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 9 of 13
    Will they charge from my MacBook Pro just like current phones?
    If so will it be a fast charge?

    We really do need to know this before we decide to part with a load of money.
    I rarely take a separate charger with me when travelling with the MacBook pro. It is just not needed.
    I'm probably going to upgrade the Macbook before the end of the year.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 10 of 13
    Normally I am not a fan of the MFI walled garden but restricting fast charging to known good USB C devices is a good thing. At the local auto show last year, I was given a free USB car charger. It went straight into the trash. Plug my $1100 iPhone X into a 10 cent piece of junk from a nation that does not teach ethics? I think not.
    racerhomie3chasm
  • Reply 11 of 13
    SpamSandwichSpamSandwich Posts: 33,408member
    Not difficult to imagine the lawsuits which would come as a result.

    ”You’re limiting consumer choice!”
  • Reply 12 of 13
    MplsPMplsP Posts: 3,360member

    mike1 said:
    MplsP said:
    macxpress said:
    Probably a safe thing to do. I still to this day do not understand why people get these $2 chargers for their phones (iPhone or Android). So I imagine, some are doing the same with the wireless charging too. It's not worth it folks!
    Because they look identical and the average layman has no clue about the electronics and design that go into something that looks quite mundane and simple. I once saw a tear down comparison of USB chargers. The Apple and Samsung chargers were both well constructed. The generic ones cut a ton of corners. 

    I remember at least one well publicized case a few years ago where either an iPhone or the charger caught fire. Turns out it was a cheap charger that caused the problem. 

    I bought it for $3 at the 7-11 checkout. It must be good. Right?
    Top notch quality! Except you payed about $2.75 more than it’s worth!
    Not difficult to imagine the lawsuits which would come as a result.

    ”You’re limiting consumer choice!”
    That was my thought at first, but this is acatually a USB standard, not an Apple standard, so as such there should be good availability from multiple manufacturers. Standards to ensure quality and connectivity are a good thing. Standards to ensure exclusivity and profits - bad!
    edited July 2018 watto_cobra
  • Reply 13 of 13
    pcdsimpcdsim Posts: 3unconfirmed, member
    Can anyone suggest an app that shows me how many Watts a charger puts out while charging?
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