Review: Anker Power Essentials

Ah! The iPhone 12! The latest and greatest iPhone has been released, with mind-blowing features and enhancements that, as usual, set Apple terabytes apart from many other competitors. We’re talking 5G, OLED, the fastest chip in a smartphone – the A14 Bionic, and no charger <insert record scratch sound effect here, follow by awkward silence>. Yup, that’s right. No charger or EarPods whatsoever. Nope.

Chances are, when you first unboxed your glorious new iPhone, this disappointing record scratch moment was probably followed by some head scratch confusion. You were likely among many other Apple customers who triple-looked for these very necessary and standard items. Surprise! “There must be some kinda physics-defying secret compartment in this empty iPhone box”, or, “Did I just lose it somehow? Am I sitting on it?!!” might have been among the words the voice (or voices… not judging) in your head said to you in bewilderment.

Alas, after a quick look on the interwebs, you found out that, indeed, Apple went with the odd decision to nix including the charger. “Surely”, said some higher-up engineer to Tim Cook, “all our customers have tons of chargers at home by now. Times are tough, so let’s save some money by not including it or the EarPods… and then we can sell them what we would have formerly given them for free! We’ll be helping to save the environment by doing this! Win-win for us!” A beer and a bonus surely went to that brilliant cursed engineer as they decided to include only the charging cable, but not the charger or EarPods, with every iPhone and Apple Watch.

As bad as all that sounds, the truth is, most of us do have a few chargers laying around at home now. Still, though, not everyone does… and for many of us, life doesn’t feel complete until we have a new charger to go with our new Apple iPhone or Watch. Am I right or am I right?

Anker to the Rescue

Thankfully, Anker saves the day with what may well be two of the best charging bricks to date. Yours truly was fortunate enough to receive a box that contains what Anker considers its “Power Essentials” to review. Mind you, this boxed bundle is not available to the public, but each of the products that are being reviewed today indeed is… and you’re going to absolutely love them. Let’s dive in, shall we?

First up is the Anker PowerPort III Nano accompanied by a USB-C to Lightning cable. While this may look like the slightly better looking and more svelte (it’s actually 50% smaller than a standard 18W iPhone charger) twin brother of the standard iPhone charger, more importantly, it works better. With a 20W output, this little brick pumps out the max charge (at a rate of 3x faster than the original 5W charger) that an iPhone 12 can take. Android users will be glad to know that the charger works on your fast-charge capable phone too.

The Nano does not disappoint. It charges faster and its smaller size allows this to be more easily stored. Throw that old 5W Apple charger into the junk drawer. You can purchase the Nano and USB-C to Lightning cable combination for a retail price of $29.99 at

Finally, the PowerPort III 2-Port 60W. This charger reminds you why over 50 million people have chosen Anker products instead of their competitors. It produces 60W of output over two USB-C ports, allowing for high-speed charging of up to two devices. Yes, you can even charge two laptops simultaneously without skipping a beat. It is designed to allocate the optimum amount of power to each of the devices to ensure the best charge every time. Oh, and if you only have one device plugged in, it’ll receive a full 60W in all its glory. With both this charger and the Nano, the charging time is, hands down, significantly faster than the standard Apple charger.

Travelers, you will welcome the fact that Anker includes with this product three interchangeable plugs, so you can use this charger anywhere in the US, the UK, or Europe. (Though the version reviewed included only a European switchable plug.) You will appreciate being able to leave a bulky charger or two at home, while you pack this one.

Again, test results are the same. Impressive. Charging two devices at once for a combined 60W is a simple feat for this Anker product.

Overall Impression

Anker continues to be a consistent brand, putting out well-designed products that actually work as or better than advertised. True, had Apple decided to continue throwing in the charger with the purchase of your iPhone, you won’t necessarily feel a burning desire to explore faster charging options. After all, Apple’s has always been sufficient. The fact is, though, that they opted to drop it. They left all iPhone 12 customers hanging for whatever the real reason is, be it a desire to cut costs or to save the environment. Still, once you have tried one of Anker’s PowerPort III series chargers, you’ll be glad they did.

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