There’s faster wireless charging, but no significant gains on iPhone X

With the iOS 11.2 update enabling Qi wireless charging at 7.5W, 50 percent faster than the standard rate, we’re wondering if we’re going to get 50 percent faster wireless charging?

MacRumors decided to do a test between the wireless charging methods as well as through adapters with traditional USB and the new USB-C port at different rates. Obviously, the more wattage that can be put into an iPhone, the faster it will charge. Wired charging, also, beats out wireless charging — available on the iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus and iPhone X.

The results are enlightening, if only a bit disappointing. Here are the numbers taken from each charge every 15 minutes starting at 1 percent.

Method 15 min. 30 min. 45 min. 60 min.
5W Wireless 11% 20% 29% 38%
5W Wired 11% 21% 30% 39%
7.5W Wireless 14% 27% 36% 46%
12W Wired 21% 39% 56% 72%
18W+ USB-C 28% 49% 68% 79%

Now, charging doesn’t work on a linear scale — control over flow, temperature and efficiency is key here — but we find that there’s not much diffusion loss for wireless charging as it nearly matches the rate for wired charging, so much so to the point that we can chalk the two as the same within the margin of error.

At a 50 percent higher wattage, we find that on a comparable hour of charging that there’s only a 20 percent power advantage. And yet, with a 140 percent jump from 5W, the 12W power adapter provides nearly double the power in 60 minutes while 18W charging on USB-C — again, the undisputed fastest method — only gets a marginal bump up after that.

If you happen to fit your life around long periods of work with your phone on the desk, wireless charging will still be a great option for frustration-free doses of interaction. Still, if you’re stuck with 15 minutes on the wall, you might want to upgrade your power block… and, if you really want to get the most juice for your loose change, your cable.

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About The Author
Jules Wang
Jules Wang is News Editor for Pocketnow and one of the hosts of the Pocketnow Weekly Podcast. He came onto the team in 2014 as an intern editing and producing videos and the podcast while he was studying journalism at Emerson College. He graduated the year after and entered into his current position at Pocketnow, full-time.