Three months ago, engineering student Ken Pillonel successfully reverse-engineered and hacked an iPhone X with a working USB-C port: a useful feature Apple still refuses to deliver. Inspired by Pillonel’s ingenuity, Gernot Jöbstl has one-upped their creation with another iPhone X with a USB-C port, but with an improved execution that’s also completely waterproof—and yes, you’ll soon be able to buy it.
If there’s any doubt as to the demand for an iPhone with a USB-C syncing and charging port instead of Apple’s long-in-the-tooth Lightning connection, Pillonel ended up selling their upgraded iPhone X through an auction whose winning bid was a staggering $86,001. Keep in mind that’s for a device that’s not only used, but also out of warranty thanks to its hardware upgrades. If the iPhone 14 were to arrive with a USB-C port finally, Apple users would eagerly upgrade en masse.
Using Pillonel’s work and the documentation on their GitHub page as a starting point, Jöbstl’s own customized iPhone X includes a couple of key improvements. To boost the durability of the added USB-C port they created a custom support, partially made of carbon fiber, that helps ensure the connection won’t come loose after repeated uses.
More importantly, one of the best features of modern smartphones is their ability to shrug off a drop in a puddle or an accidental dunking in a toilet. It’s a feature often compromised after a custom modification, but through the gratuitous use of super glue that ends up mostly hidden away inside, Jöbstl’s USB-C iPhone X retains its waterproofing.
To help fund further modding endeavors, Jöbstl plans to put their iPhone X up for auction starting at 12pm EST (17:00 UTC) on January 19, with the link eventually being shared in the description of their YouTube video. Will it end up selling for more than $86,000? Assuming Apple doesn’t reveal a USB-C-equipped iPhone 14 in the next five days, you’re probably going to need deep pockets to win this auction.