But what is this GaN/gallium nitride technology? What are the benefits of GaN? And should you upgrade all your chargers today? Also: Anker’s latest GaNPrime power products: A roundup of safe, fast, and sustainable charging To answer these questions, we need to go on a little journey, one that touches gently on chemistry, physics, and electronics. Also: Using the wrong USB-C cable can damage your tech. Here’s how to avoid that Now GaN has found its way into transistors and is replacing the industry’s previous favorite semiconductor material – silicon. And the less waste heat generated, the lower the chances of overheating and the less cooling that is required to keep the charger operating safely. Consumers are, understandably, concerned when chargers feel hot to the touch. While it is common for chargers that use silicon transistors to get to the point of almost being too hot to touch, I find it rare for a charger using GaN technology to feel mildly warm. The faster switching also means that a GaN transistor inside a charger can have better control over the charging and respond to events such as overheating or overvoltage much quicker than older transistors could.  This greater efficiency and faster switching are critical for modern USB-C chargers because USB-C carries even increasing power loads, with 100W loads now being commonplace and 240W chargers soon to be a reality. If you are happy with your existing chargers, stick with them until you feel the need to upgrade, and then choose a new GaN USB charger that suits your needs. If there’s nothing wrong with your chargers, and they do what you want them to do, it’s a shame to turn them into e-waste. However, if you need a smaller, cooler USB charger today, then I’d highly recommend choosing a GaN charger because you get all the benefits of modern technology for little additional cost. How can you tell if you are buying a GaN charger? Don’t worry, it’ll say all over the marketing! If you’re looking for a GaN charger, two companies I recommend taking a look at are Anker and UGreen. Both make high-quality chargers and have a great selection, from small, portable charging units to bigger desktop chargers.