At CES 2022, Anker announced an addition to its Nano II USB-C charger lineup with this more powerful version featuring two USB-C ports capable of outputting up to 100W, plus a USB-A charging port on the side. ‘Ancient. Now, the $79 Anker Nano II 100W (also known as the Anker 736 Charger) has gone on sale on Amazon (via MacRumors), even if it is already full.
The Nano II chargers use the company’s second-generation version of gallium nitride components that replace the silicon components of older chargers to pump more power into a smaller package with less heat. According to Anker, the 100W Nano II is 34% smaller than Apple’s 96W charger, with similar capabilities plus two additional ports that help reduce the number of items you’ll need to keep all your devices powered up. Another advantage is that its fast charging is compatible with a wide range of devices, with USB Power Delivery 3.0 PPS (programmable power supply standard) and support for Quick Charge 3.0.
The caveat with this charger is that its USB-C ports are capable of up to 100W power output, but that’s only true when a device is plugged into one of them. Many laptops and other devices require much less power than this to recharge or even charge quickly, but it’s something to consider if you have a larger MacBook Pro. Using both USB-C ports simultaneously reduces the maximum output to 60W from the first slot and 40W from the second – Anker has a chart to break it down further.
Anker isn’t the only company using gallium nitride (GaN) for smaller, more powerful chargers – Apple’s first brick with the technology is the 140W power supply that comes with the 16-inch MacBook Pro – but it has led the pack since introducing its first GaN power adapter in 2018.
In an interview with The edge EIC Nilay Patel on the decoder podcast last fall, Anker CEO Steven Yang explained why his company was so quick to introduce GaN and create products based on it.
Gallium nitride is a key enabling technology that hit the market about three years ago, but you’re already talking about the third generation. Is Gallium Nitride a technology you need to invest engineering resources in? Is there a supplier pipeline or a materials science pipeline? How do you manage this investment?
Anker was actually the first to introduce gallium nitride into the charging of consumer electronics. We were able to do this by partnering with the pioneering chipset manufacturers who developed the gallium nitride charging chip. We were almost their alpha customer. So when the chip was first developed, there are a lot of hurdles to jump through to make it a product. This requires not only material science knowledge, but also application knowledge, system architecture knowledge, and heat management knowledge. It’s almost a system effort. We are accumulating knowledge about it and linking it to gallium nitride chips and manufacturer to integrate into products.
You will see the GaN2 this year at the 65 watt size and at the 30 watt size. We’ve been working with Power Innovations for almost a year on this. GaN2 is the newest generation of chips that we launched in the middle of this year. The GaN2’s 65 watt size was a fraction of the competition.
The reason we were able to do this is based on the latest generation of their GaN2 from Power Innovations. We’ve been the only partner for almost a year developing this – you won’t see similar products from other brands for at least three to six months because PI and Anker work together, only.
So Anker and PI had an exclusive relationship to develop the next-gen GaN chipset, and then that window opens three to six months later for other people to buy that chipset.
Anker’s US media relations manager, Tyler Mallery, confirmed The edge that the loader has actually launched and that Anker is waiting for more inventory to arrive. The 736 charger is in sufficient quantity that it’s not even listed on Anker’s website yet, but if it’s the charger you’ve been waiting for, keep an eye on this Amazon page to see when it returns .