Fast charging is a great smartphone feature that gives you the ability to charge your phone faster. In this blog post, I will explain what is fast charging and how it works.
What Is Fast Charging?
Fast charging is a term that’s used when referring to devices and chargers that are capable of charging faster than the standard 5-watt charger.
At the moment, there are various technologies that give us the ability to achieve fast charging, however, there is no industry-standard.
Due to the lack of an industry-standard, some manufacturers claim that their product offers fast charging but in reality, it only provides the standard 5W charging speeds.
This is terrible, I will tell you everything you need to know about fast charging.
Why Has Fast Charging Become So Popular?
Fast charging has become extremely popular within the past few years because it gives you the ability to charge your phone or tablet faster.
Fast charging is a convenient feature that gives you the ability to top-up your phone in significantly less time than it would take if you used the standard charging technology.
Due to the fact that there is no industry standard for fast charging all phones do not offer the same type of fast charging and all chargers do not support the different standards.
How Does Fast Charging Work?
The charge output is measured in amperage, voltage, and wattage. The Amperage is also referred to as the current which is the amount of electricity that flows from the battery to the device that it’s attached to.
The voltage is the speed at which the electric current moves. The wattage can be calculated by multiplying amperage by voltage, this is also known as the total power.
To achieve fast charging, manufacturers vary the voltage or boost the amperage which increases the amount of energy that’s going to a device.
However, the majority of fast charging standards alter the voltage instead of boosting the amperage.
The majority of phones and tablets are capable of managing 5V/2.4A. However, for fast charging, the voltage will be boosted to 5V, 9V, 12V, or higher or the amperage may be boosted to 3A or higher.
Smartphones are made in such a way that allows them to only take in as much power as their circuits are designed for.
So if you charge your phone with a more powerful adapter such as a 5V/3.1A, but it’s only capable of handling 5V/2A, this is the speed at which it will charge.
To use fast charging effectively, you must have a device with a charging circuit that’s compatible with one of the fast charging standards that are currently available and you must have a cable and an adapter that’s compatible with the same standard.
The Most Popular Types Of Fast Charging Offered:
Qualcomm Quick Charge:
Qualcomm Quick Charge is the most popular fast charging standard used today, this is due to the popularity of the Qualcomm Snapdragon processors that are used in many devices today.
There are different versions of Qualcomm Quick Charge available from V1 to V5 and every version is compatible with the previous version, this means that older adapters and cables will work with newer devices.
Quick Charge 5.0 makes it possible to charge devices with up to 100W+ of power.
Samsung Adaptive Fast Charging:
Samsung Adaptive Fast Charging is present on premium Samsung phones, this technology works in a similar manner to that of Qualcomm Quick Charge.
Samsung Adaptive Fast Charging achieves faster charging by boosting the amperage and voltage.
This technology is only compatible with premium Samsung phones that have compatible adapters that offer between 5V/2A (10W) for older phones and 10V/4.5A (45W) for newer phones and these adapters are also compatible with USB Power Delivery.
This technology makes it possible to charge phones such as the Samsung Galaxy Note 10 plus from 0 to 100% in a little under an hour.
Apple Fast Charging
Since the arrival of the iPhone 8, with the exception of the iPhone 11 Pro and 11 Pro Max, all of the iPhones have supported fast charging.
Apple fast charging uses USB Power Delivery and Apple claims that you will get a 50% increase in the battery life in half an hour.
However, you must use at least an 18W adapter with a USB-C-to Lightning cable to get these speeds. You should be aware that using a more powerful adapter will not increase the charging speed.
OnePlus Dash Charging:
OnePlus Dash Charging is compatible with OnePlus phones, it boosts the amperage to 5V/4A which produces an output of 20W.
Huawei SuperCharge is very similar to the other fast charging technologies on this list because it works by altering the amperage and voltage.
This is done via compatible cables and adapters which gives you the ability to get an output of 5V/1A (5W) up to 4.5V/5A (22.5W).
How Do The Fast Charging Standards Stack Up Against Each Other?
There are many smartphone models that use in-house fast charging technologies rather than the more well-known technologies that we’re all familiar with.
Nevertheless, only a few of these fast charging standards are well established. Many of these technologies are very similar to Quick Charge with some minor modifications but they are referred to as something else, while other standards are simply Power Delivery systems.
When I think of this, I often think about Motorola’s Turbo Charging and Samsung’s Adaptive Charging.
There are other systems such as Huawei’s SuperCharge and Oppo’s VOOC that work a bit differently.
These systems significantly increase the amount of current for high power charging instead of increasing the voltage.
These proprietary technologies have significantly increased their charging speeds over the years with Super VOCC, SuperCharge, and OnePlus’s WarpCharge 30 being among the fastest on the market today.
It would be great if there was support for multiple standards or at least guarantee a certain level of compatibility among the various fast charging methods.
However, attempting to do this often leads to lots of uncertainty in regards to the exact charging speeds that you will receive while using phones with different cables and chargers.
Thus the reason why it’s best to use the cable and charger that came with your phone when you’re charging it.
Is Wireless Fast Charging A Great Alternative?
Wireless Fast Charging is very convenient but it may be slower if the wireless chargers do not have cooling systems or fans or if their charging speeds are 5V/1A.
However, there are a number of companies that offer fast wireless charging pads that have fans built-in to neutralize the heat.
This is great because it makes it possible for manufacturers to provide faster-charging speeds which are almost the same as the Fast Charging speeds offered when charging with a cable.
The amperage and the voltage vary depending on the charging pad. However, if you are looking for the ideal charging pad, you must make sure that your wireless charging pad and your phone support the same fast charging standard.
You will also need a wall adapter that plugs into the pad, this comes with the pad. However, if you lose it, you cannot replace it with any adapter and cable, the adapter and cable must be compatible.
Is Fast Charging Safe?
Due to the fact that fast charging technologies charge your phone at a faster rate than that of standard charging, your charger and your phone may heat up while charging.
If you are concerned about safety for best results, you should use high quality cables and adapters that support the same fast charging technology as your phone.
You should check the fast charging standard that your phone supports and make sure the adapter that you’re using supports the same standard (adapters are labeled) and make sure you use the cable that came with the adapter.
Fast Charging Is Complex:
Fast charging is a complex procedure that incorporated a wide range of different technologies, each one has its strengths and weaknesses.
Thus the reason why there are so many different fast charging standards that are currently on the market.
Every company is trying to use its own method to speed up the charging process and maximize battery life.
Some years ago, high voltage charging was extremely common but now there are other types of technologies that are incorporating lower voltages and higher currents to further boost charging speeds.
Doing this requires thicker cables which creates another compatibility issue. Nevertheless, USB Power Delivery has been widely adopted, and it will most likely be the base of all USB charging standards in the future.
However, we will continue to see various smartphone manufacturers experiment with their own fast-charging solutions aside from supporting this charging standard.
What’s Needed For Fast Charging?
The fast charging standard that you can use will vary depending on the make and model of your phone. You should find out what type of fast charging your phone supports, then take a look at your wall adapter to see if it’s compatible with the same standard.
Then you must make sure that your cable is compatible, it’s best to use the cable that came with your adapter or phone.
If you have to buy a new wall adapter, wireless charging pad, or cable, you should pay special attention to the standard that it supports.
Now You Know Everything You Need To Know About Fast Charging:
If you have any comments or questions about any of this info, please feel free to share them in the comment section below.