There's a ton of stuff you can purchase to enrich your experience with Apple's iPhone X, even though your bank account is probably already a little sad from the smartphone's not-so-insignificant price.
Some accessories, like a brand-new case, are essential to your health and well-being. You read that right. Dropping and breaking a $1,000+ device may drive you to madness. (Worse, bankruptcy: Apple charges $279 for an iPhone X screen replacement.)
Other accessories, like a speedy power adapter or wireless charging pad, are necessary if you're going to want to take advantage of some of the newest features in the iPhone X. We've spent quite a bit of time meta-analyzing some of the best gear you can get for your iPhone X. Here's what the experts suggest:
iPhone X case for everyone: Silk Base Grip
The product-reviewing fanatics over at The Wirecutter have loved the Silk Base Grip for some time, recommending it as the best case to purchase for all versions of the iPhone 7 and iPhone 8.
It makes sense that Silk's Base Grip case for the iPhone X would also offer great protection without much bulk, so it's worth putting at the top of your accessory shopping list. Plus, it's under $20—you won't be able to find better iPhone X case for less at the Apple Store, that's for sure.
iPhone X case for the truly clumsy: Otterbox Defender
We could point to official reviews of the Otterbox Defender, but it's probably more effective to just cut to our favorite demonstration: a 50-foot drop test. While we don't recommend you let your phone take a dive off the nearest rooftop, and we can't be held responsible if your phone doesn't work after a meager fall from your pocket, the iPhone X version of the Otterbox Defender has the most potential for protection of all the cases we've seen.
More (annoying) chargers and cables for your iPhone X
The iPhone X comes with a Lightning to USB cable—that's it. While that'll let you charge your phone at decent speeds using the included 5W power adapter, you're not going to benefit from the iPhone X's fast-charging capabilities unless you pick up an extra accessory or two. (The Lightning to USB cable isn't going to let you charge your iPhone X from your brand-new, USB-C-only MacBook, either.)
To use the iPhone X's fast charging, which allows it to get around half of its battery life in one 30-minute charge, you're going to need Apple's 12W power adapter at minimum. That's going to cost a bit more than a third-party device like the Aukey 27W USB-Charger, which you may want to consider.
If you're looking to charge your iPhone X from your USB-C MacBook, you only have one option: Apple. The company hasn't allowed third-party manufacturers to make Lightning cables (yet), so you're going to have to pick up a pricey USB-C to Lightning cable from the Apple Store. Sorry about that.
Which wireless charger to get?
The iPhone X supports Qi wireless charging, which trades speed for convenience. Your brand-new iPhone will charge more slowly than its aforementioned fast charging mode, but you'll be able to just set it on a pad and forget about it. Apple is likely to boost the iPhone X's wireless charging speeds in a future software update, but that'll make it just slightly faster than what you'd get by plugging it into its 5W power adapter.
The Verge is a big fan of the Ravpower Fast Charge Wireless Charging Pad, which outperformed the other wireless chargers it tested in its most recent roundup. Ravpower's charging pad also comes with a 24W power adapter, which you could also use to fast-charge your iPhone X if you hold on to the smartphone's Lightning to USB cable.
Says The Verge's Chaim Gartenberg: "In terms of performance, the RavPower Fast Charge outputs up to 10W of power — enough for regular speed charging (typically 5W), Samsung’s 9W quick-charging, and the Apple’s own 7.5W iteration that will be coming to the iPhone 8 and X in a future update. And while quick charging doesn’t offer quite as significant of an advantage as it does with wired charging, it’ll still cut down on your charging time, assuming your device supports it. And given the universal nature of wireless charging tech, making sure you’re future proofed is just common sense."
If you prefer a wireless charging stand, The Verge notes that the Ravpower 2 Coils Wireless Charger is a decent, inexpensive alternative. Unlike the RavPower Fast Charge Wireless Charging Pad, it doesn't come with a power adapter, so you'll likely just plug it into your iPhone X's power adapter. That's fine for now, but you'll want to pick up a speedier third-party power adapter once Apple unlocks faster wireless charging in the iPhone X.
Battery packs that can't be beat
If you get really, really into your iPhone X, you may find yourself running low on juice from all the Portrait Lighting pictures, 4K videos, and animoji you're creating and sending to friends. And if you're on vacation, you might not want to put the brakes on the fun while you find a place to plug into for an hour or so.
The solution? Carry some extra power with you. Over at iMore, the Travelcard 1,500mAH charger gets rave reviews for its portability: "1,500mAh won't give you a full charge for your iPhone, but it will easily help you make it to the end of the day and then some. What more can you expect from a charger that's roughly the length and width of a credit card?"
On the other side of the spectrum, the Anker PowerCore 20100 Portable Charger is the beast you'll want if you know you aren't going to be able to access an outlet for a few days. According to iMore, Anker's portable battery can "charge your iPhone about five times and all in a package about the size of your iPhone. And pricing reasonably starts around $40. Dual USB ports let you charge two devices at the same time, making this perfect for everyday use, especially if you like to rock your iPhone and iPad all day long."