“So we know using cheap, third party cables to charge an iPhone is bad, but what about the little bricks that plug into the wall or nubs that plug into a car lighter? Is it safe to use those with a certified Apple cord?”
The answer is probably not going to thrill you: It depends.
I’ll caveat my advice by saying that I’m hardly an electronics expert like Nathan K. or Benson Leung, but I’ll do my best. Generally, Apple would prefer you use Apple devices—and only Apple devices—to charge your iPhone. But even the tech juggernaut stocks plenty of third-party adapters and cables at its own online and retail stores. If the company was truly that concerned about third-party products potentially wrecking or blowing up its devices, it wouldn’t sell them.
That said, the best suggestion I can give is also the most generic: Don’t buy power adapters or cables that don’t pass the smell test. If something looks too good to be true—perhaps its priced extraordinarily low compared to other power adapters you’re looking at, or it just looks like a crappy counterfeit of a real power adapter—don’t buy it.
When you’re shopping, research products from big, reputable brands you’ve heard of: Anker, Samsung, Belkin, RavPower, etc. Read reviews from others who have purchased the power adapters, and note any instances where people have had critical issues when charging their smartphones or tablets. Sometimes, that just happens. If it feels like it’s happening to a majority of people who are leaving a review for a product, steer clear.
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