Since the release of USB-C laptops, there have been dongles made to plug in older cables to the new standard. But AnyWatt, a new Kickstarter project from a startup called Elecjet, could be the adapter you’ve been waiting for.
The AnyWatt comes in three versions: one for square-headed chargers, like those found on Lenovo laptops; one for more traditional barrel plugs; and perhaps most surprising, one for Apple’s MagSafe 2 adapter. While all three flavors of the AnyWatt seem useful, allowing you to recycle a charger for a newer device or more easily borrow a cable from a friend who hasn’t upgraded to the new spec, the MagSafe version is particularly interesting.
That’s because Apple has a strict patent on the MagSafe design and tends to block anyone who tries to make MagSafe-compatible accessories, even if it’s made out of recycled official Apple-made parts. So it’s certainly a question how this relatively unknown startup is managing to pull this off, especially given that Apple is already rumored to be working on its own version of a similar dongle.
That said, the ability to use an older Mac charger with a new MacBook Pro (or any other USB-C laptop or device) is basically the holy grail of charging dongles. Other companies have already tried to make breakaway USB-C cables similar to MagSafe, but the AnyWatt would make it possible to use the existing Mac charger you have instead of buying a new cable and wall brick.
The AnyWatt also claims to support the USB-C PD specification, meaning that it can intelligently adjust power delivery based on the needs of the recipient device. It can also supply more power than regular USB-C cables can. That makes it perfect for charging almost any USB-C device, from the Nintendo Switch up to a full laptop (assuming the source charger has enough power to drive those devices, anyway).
Given the questionable claim of offering a MagSafe-compatible device, however, along with the crowdfunded nature of a hardware device from a first-time company, the usual warnings to use your best judgement before backing definitely apply here.
The AnyWatt is available on Kickstarter for $19, and it is expected to ship in September this year.