If you’re in Apple’s ecosystem, count this as a small victory — Belkin just released the first Apple-approved portable power bank that charges via a Lightning cable. Yes, that means you can charge this non-Apple product with the same cable that you use with your iPhone, iPad and AirPods. Hallelujah.
Apple is well known — frustrating so — for keeping its proprietary charging port under wraps. In fact, this is the first MFi- approved (Made-for-iPhone/iPad) product made by a non-Apple company to date. (Note: Aukey offers a 20,000mAh portable power bank with a Lightning port ($35) that’s not MFi- approved.)
The portable power bank — officially named the BoostCharge Power Bank Lightning 10K ($59) — is a 10,000mAH battery that has two USB Type-A ports (one 2.4 amp, one 1 amp) in addition to the Lightning port. There’s no micro-USB or USB-C ports which are now common amongst newer portable power banks.
Despite the ecstasy that many Apple users are feeling, Belkin’s new portable power bank has some drawbacks. It’s pretty expensive, for one, as other 10,000mAh batteries by Anker (here) and RavPower (here) cost about half of what the new Belkin is going for. Also, it doesn’t support Quick Charge technology or USB Power Delivery (USB PD), so it won’t be able to fast charge your new iPhone. It won’t be able to charge your MacBook at all.
That said, if you’re looking for a portable charger that won’t require you to bring an extra charging cable (other than a Lightning cable), Belkin’s new option is exciting. You can preorder it now on Belkin’s website, in either white or black, and it’s expected to ship in August.