It’s not without precedent, either. An Apple event last month also included a monologue from Jackson explaining the company’s decision not to include a charging cable with the latest models of the Apple Watch.

But while some bemoan the loss of these crucial accessories—technophiles complained for years about the 2016 decision to eliminate the iPhone’s headphone jack—the smaller, rounder USB-C connection has several advantages over the older and still more ubiquitous square USB-A model. It’s durable, reversible, and more versatile.

It can also carry more power. Apple’s now effectively defunct USB-A power adapter, which was included with every iPhone before today, transferred a measly 5 watts of power, which makes for what feels like a lengthy charge in 2020. The new USB-C cable, on the other hand, is compatible with Apple’s 12, 30, or even 96-watt adapters. Compared to the now decade-old 5-watt charging technology, any one of these USB-C setups feels like a cell phone supercharger.

As always with Apple, the benefits of upgrading your tech are real, but never free. Removing the headphone jack set up consumers to shell out $200 for AirPods, and the new iPhone will lead to potentially millions of USB-C power adapters flying off the shelves. But these periodic shifts also open the door to new technologies. Every part of the charging stack is currently being reinvented, from the raw materials inside a power adapter to new form factors for wireless charging. So if Apple deserves criticism for being slow to add features like telephoto lenses or to introduce new folding phone designs, it should also get some credit when it nudges technology forward like it’s trying to do with charging.

All of which is to say: On a day that saw four new iPhones and a new HomePod speaker, the product announcement with the biggest impact could end up being a $20 cable.

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