Apple's new 16-inch MacBook Pro charger uses GaN to stay small

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The 140W charger for the new 16-inch MacBook Pro is Apple's first one to use gallium nitride technology to keep it small, and improve power delivery capacity.

As part of the launch of its new 16-inch MacBook Pro with MagSafe support, Apple introduced a new 140W charger for its hardware. A considerable jump from the 67W and 96W chargers included with the new notebooks, the charger has Apple incorporating new technologies in the accessory for the first time.

The charger is Apple's first to employ gallium nitride, or GaN, the company confirmed to The Verge. GaN is a material that allows for higher voltage capacity and reduced energy loss due to heat, for example.

The efficiency of the material enables producers to create physically smaller chargers with similar capabilities to more conventional production methods.

Apple's new charger is also one that uses the USB-C Power Delivery 3.1 standard, making it cross-compatible with other hardware that adheres to the same standard.

Apple also clarified the fast charging capability of the charger, as it exceeds the previous USB-C Power Delivery cap of 100W.

As the 14-inch MacBook Pro can fast charge at a maximum of 96W, it can do so via both the MagSafe 3 and Thunderbolt 4 ports.

For the 16-inch model, you can recharge using either MagSafe 3 or Thunderbolt 4, but you won't reach the 140W fast charging capability of the new charger unless you use the MagSafe port and Apple's charger — for now.

The new 140W charger is being sold as a separate purchase to the MacBook Pros, at $99. That price excludes the $49 USB-C to MagSafe cable.