Everyone was wrong. iPhone isn't the end of the power brick – Apple Watch is.

Apple Watch SE Press Photo
Apple Watch SE Press Photo (Image credit: Apple)

What you need to know

  • Rumors had Apple ditching the USB power brick with iPhone 12.
  • But they were wrong – it's already dead.
  • Apple Watch Series 6, Apple Watch SE, and Apple Watch Series 3 have done away with it completely.

Apple announced Apple Watch Series 6 and Apple Watch SE today and the biggest news was the fact they don't ship with any form of USB power brick.

Well, maybe not the biggest but it's still a pretty big deal.

Rumors have said that Apple's iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro would be the first products to ship without any way to charge them in the box. They'll come with USB cables, sure, but that's it. No power brick at all. And those rumors will probably turn out to be 100% correct. Except iPhone wasn't the first to do it – Apple Watch is.

Apple says that the removal of the adapter will help the environment, just as we'd expected it to.

Apple is also helping the environment by removing the AC adapter that could become electronic waste from Apple Watch Series 6 packaging, and helping its Apple Watch manufacturing partners transition to renewable energy.

Apple is so committed that it's not only changing the packaging of its new Apple Watches, but it's also doing it with Apple Watch Series 3 – a wearable that continues to hang around even following the arrival of Apple Watch SE. So far, Apple's Hermes Apple Watches continue to ship with a power brick although that's likely to change at some point in the future.

If there was any doubt that Apple would ship its latest iPhones without a charger in the box, this should clear that right up.

Oliver Haslam

Oliver Haslam has written about Apple and the wider technology business for more than a decade with bylines on How-To Geek, PC Mag, iDownloadBlog, and many more. He has also been published in print for Macworld, including cover stories. At iMore, Oliver is involved in daily news coverage and, not being short of opinions, has been known to 'explain' those thoughts in more detail, too.

Having grown up using PCs and spending far too much money on graphics card and flashy RAM, Oliver switched to the Mac with a G5 iMac and hasn't looked back. Since then he's seen the growth of the smartphone world, backed by iPhone, and new product categories come and go. Current expertise includes iOS, macOS, streaming services, and pretty much anything that has a battery or plugs into a wall. Oliver also covers mobile gaming for iMore, with Apple Arcade a particular focus. He's been gaming since the Atari 2600 days and still struggles to comprehend the fact he can play console quality titles on his pocket computer.