The smaller a computer gets, the more sophisticated it becomes. Smartphones like the iPhone happen to be the smallest computers available right now, and you can’t easily upgrade one on your own. But it’s not impossible to turn an off-the-shelf iPhone 13 Pro Max into a device that has USB-C connectivity, a 3.5mm headphone jack, double the battery life, and an internal fan to improve cooling. But it won’t be pretty.
Does the iPhone 13 have USB-C?
For years, we’ve wondered whether Apple will make the switch from Lightning to USB-C on iPhone. But that hasn’t happened yet, even though Apple transitioned almost every iPad in its lineup to USB-C. The iPhone 13 USB-C rumors came like clockwork, but Apple never went that way.
Naturally, rumors then said that the iPhone 14 models might be the first ones to feature a USB-C, especially considering pressure from the EU for all vendors to embrace the same charging port. But it seems more likely that Apple will move to a wireless-charging-only iPhone rather than embrace USB-C.
That said, engineers who aren’t afraid to mess with the iPhone’s internals have added USB-C connectivity to the iPhone by themselves. We saw an iPhone X with USB-C connectivity selling for thousands of dollars online a few months ago.
This wasn’t even the first crazy iPhone hardware hack. A different engineer added a headphone jack to the iPhone 7 a few years ago. He did it without changing the phone’s overall design, save for the 3.5mm port that had to be added to the chassis.
If you’ve witnessed those custom iPhones, you won’t be surprised to see what’s possible with the iPhone 13 Pro Max. An engineer from China gave the handset a massive makeover that includes USB-C connectivity and a 3.5mm headphone jack.
The custom iPhone 13 Pro Max “Ultra”
TikTok user Douyin decided to go for a massive upgrade on the iPhone 13 Pro Max, turning into an “Ultra” device unlike anything on the market. Before we look at the new features, we’ll also have to state the obvious. The iPhone 13 Pro Max Ultra isn’t at all pretty. It has about double the width, as the modder glued another case on top of the existing metal frame.
That’s what allowed him to add the extra components to the phone. The USB-C and 3.5mm jack sit on the bottom, flanking the Lightning port. The modder also tweaked the top speaker to make it louder.
Inside the iPhone 13 Pro Max Ultra, another battery effectively doubles the handset’s life. The iPhone 13 Pro Max can last two days on a charge, and it currently delivers the best smartphone battery life out there.
The extra space allowed Douyin to place two small fans inside the iPhone 13 Pro Max Ultra contraption for even better cooling.
The end result is an iPhone 13 version with USB-C connectivity that features better battery life. Moreover, the phone scores better in some benchmarks, which implies that the extra cooling helps the handset deliver peak performance for an extended period.
However, air circulating inside the phone also exposes the components to dust particles. And this custom iPhone 13 Pro Max is no longer water-resistant.
You can view the videos documenting the iPhone 13 Pro Max transformation at this link.
More iPhone coverage: For more iPhone news, visit our iPhone 14 guide.