iPhone X, 8 ‘fast’ wireless chargers may be slower than Samsung

Just drop it on the charger, no need for a plug. That’s how inductive wireless charging works — and it’s becoming a standard feature on the new iPhone X, iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus. You should be able to use practically any Qi wireless charger to top them up.

But not all wireless charging is created equal, and it seems like Apple may have opted for a slower version of the technology than rival Samsung. 

Even though both the new iPhones and Samsung’s Galaxy devices use the same Qi wireless power standard, Apple’s accessory partners have just announced a pair of “fast” wireless charging stations that support a maximum of 7.5-watt output — half the power of Samsung’s 15-watt fast wireless chargers. (The Qi standard allows fast chargers to top out at 15 watts as of Version 1.2.)

Both the $60 Belkin Boost Up and $60 Mophie Wireless Charging Base do suggest that their 7.5 watts of power will charge a new iPhone faster than a traditional 5-watt Qi charger, and that’s probably true. But it seems unlikely that they’d charge as quickly as if they had twice the electricity at their disposal. 

The 7.5-watt chargers would seem to confirm a rumor from August that Apple’s wireless charging would be slower. 

(While Apple does claim you can charge these new iPhones to 50 percent in 30 minutes — a speed we’ve seen companies with 15-watt wireless chargers claim before — Apple’s site suggests it tested that with a physical USB-C cable and 29W power adapter, not a wireless charger.)    

Still, it’s possible that Apple’s own custom AirPower charger (see video above) will offer more juice. Apple hasn’t yet said how many watts it offers or how quickly it will charge a phone, only that it can charge three devices at the same time. 

Apple didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.

Apple
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