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February 3, 2021
Have you just got a new iPhone for Christmas? Upgraded from an older iPhone to a new colorful iPhone 11, with its new camera system and upgraded battery life? You may notice that although the iPhone battery life is significantly improved, it takes even longer to charge than your old phone. A fast charger makes a big difference …
The iPhone 11 comes with a paltry Apple 5W charger in the box. Apple is bundling the same slow charger in the box whilst making the battery capacity even bigger. This results in the phone taking longer to charge when plugged in, in excess of 3 hours to get to full.
This is not a problem if you only charge your phone overnight, but many use cases would be improved if the phone could charge more rapidly. Well, it can.
The solution is to buy the Apple 18W USB-C charger and a Lightning to USB-C cable. These the same accessories that come included with the iPhone 11 Pro and iPhone 11 Pro Max. The higher-rated power adapter means you can charge the iPhone 11 a lot faster. With the USB-C brick, you will fast charge from 0% to 50% in about 30 minutes. A full charge to 100% should take about an hour and a half.
If you don’t want to move into the USB-C power adapter world quite yet, you can still charge more quickly by using the old-style iPad chargers. These are 12W chargers so whilst they aren’t quite as fast as the 18W option, they will still be significantly faster than the 5W brick. You may already own one of these chargers if you have bought an iPad before, and you can plug in your standard USB Lightning cable.
To illustrate the jump in battery capacity, the iPhone 11 has a 3,110mAH battery. Compare that to something like the iPhone 6S, which had a 1715 mAH battery. The capacity is effectively doubled, and that’s why charging can take twice as long if you use the same 5W charger.
Apple sells even faster USB-C chargers up to 87W, which are designed to be used for MacBooks, but don’t bother shelling out the extra money for the iPhone. The iPhone’s port has a maximum wattage throughput and charging at 18W will basically be as fast as charging at anything higher. The 87W chargers will work with the iPhone just fine, but don’t expect to get even faster charge times.
Apple broke new ground by including the fast charger with the iPhone 11 Pro models. So if you have one of the Pro phones, the 18W charger is bundled in the box for you to take advantage of. Perhaps next year, Apple will find the generosity to include it on all new iPhones as standard.
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