How to Charge Your iPhone Faster When You Don't Have Much Time

How to Charge Your iPhone Faster When You Don’t Have Much Time

You look at your iPhone and realize it’s very low on battery and worst of all, you’re about to go somewhere where you won’t be able to charge your device. You could fast charge your phone right then and there, but will that be enough for you? Possibly, if you maximize certain features.

Let’s go over several ways you can quickly charge your battery enough to get you through the next hour or so, or even longer. Some methods are tried and true, like turning on Airplane Mode to reduce the power consumption associated with being on a cellular network, and others are newer, like using a wireless network. MagSafe charger.

These methods can also be mixed and matched and can hopefully give you at least enough power to perform essential tasks.

If you have a fast charger, use it

The fastest way to charge your iPhone is with a fast charger: connecting a 20W power adapter with a USB-C to Lightning cable. As long as you own a iPhone 8 or later, you can fast-charge your phone from zero to around 50 percent battery in about 30 minutes. If you have a free hour, you can fully charge it. Even just 10 minutes of fast charging can boost your battery by double digits, so if you’re short on time, always go for the fast charging option.

read more: The best fast chargers for iPhone 13 at the lowest prices we can find

Unfortunately, Apple no longer provides power adapters when you buy a new phone, just the cable, but you can buy the Apple 20W Power Adapter from Apple and Amazon. According to Apple, you can also use other compatible fast-charging power bricks, but you’ll need at least a 20W brick to fast-charge an iPhone 12 and later.

Mkeke USB Type-C Charger

Mkeke makes a 20W charger for less than $9.


A MagSafe wireless charger is a good idea if you don’t have a fast charger

The second fastest way to charge your iPhone is with Apple’s MagSafe charger and a 20W power adapter, but for this to work you need to have an iPhone 12 or iPhone 13 to get the faster 15W wireless charging. If your iPhone is dead, it should reach around 30% battery in about 30 minutes of wireless charging.

However, this doesn’t mean you can use just any Qi wireless charger, which is the industry standard, for fast charging. While the MagSafe charger supports 15W, a Qi charger only gives you up to 7.5W, which is much slower than a MagSafe and only slightly faster than the traditional 5W wall charger. Magnetic wireless chargers that are not MagSafe certified will also charge at the slower rate of 7.5W.

A MagSafe charger on a phone in a person's hand

The MagSafe charger can be fast, but only in certain scenarios.

Patrick Holland/CNET

Do not use a laptop or desktop

Your laptop is a very convenient way to charge your iPhone, especially if you spend most of the day in front of a computer and want to keep a close eye on incoming text messages and notifications. Unfortunately, your computer will always charge your phone slower than any wall charger or wireless charger.

Your computer’s USB port, whether it’s the older, larger USB-A or the smaller, newer USB-C, can’t deliver the same amount of power as any outlet, even a 5W power adapter. And that’s especially true if you have an older computer with a faulty USB port or incompatible charging cable, both of which can slow down the charging process even more.

And don’t use your iPhone while it’s charging.

It goes without saying, but if you want your iPhone to charge as fast as possible, try to stay away from it as much as possible. If you’re streaming videos or playing mobile games while charging your iPhone, the battery will charge much more slowly, so leave it untouched if you can.

For best results, turn off your phone while charging

Even if your screen is off, your phone is still running in the background, constantly updating apps, sending notifications, and turning on the screen, all of which waste battery life. If you want your iPhone to charge faster, the best thing to do is turn it off.

You can also put it in airplane mode while it is charging.

If you don’t want to turn off your iPhone, but want to help it charge faster, you can turn on Airplane Mode, which turns off all power-hungry wireless transmission features like cellular, Wi-Fi, and Bluetooth. If they are off, your iPhone can charge faster. And this way, you can also quickly turn off Airplane Mode to quickly check on any text messages or phone calls that might be waiting.

Use low power mode, dark mode and lower brightness

You know all those tips that help you conserve battery in the first place? You can use those same features and settings to help your iPhone charge faster if you don’t plan on turning it off.

  • low power mode. Turn it on to reduce or affect battery-draining features like 5G, screen brightness, auto-lock, background app refresh, auto-download, and more.
  • dark modeNote: The jury is still out on how much dark mode actually saves battery life, but turning it on while you’re charging your iPhone doesn’t hurt, especially if every percentage matters.
  • Lower the brightness of your screen: The brighter the screen, the faster the battery will drain, so turn it all the way down while charging.
Low battery mode on iPhone

Apple’s Low Power Mode helps conserve iPhone battery life.

Sarah Tew/CNET

Disable the optimized battery charging feature

Apple has a built-in tool that helps prevent your iPhone’s battery from degrading so quickly, but this same feature also makes your device charge more slowly. While the feature usually only slows down your iPhone during long periods of charging, and typically overnight, it may still be worth turning it off when you’re charging your phone. To go Settings > Drums > battery status and disable Optimized battery charging to disable this feature.

Maybe it’s time for a new battery

On the same settings page where you can disable optimized battery charging, you can also check your battery status. If you see a message like “Your battery condition has degraded significantly,” you should consider scheduling an appointment with Apple to have your battery replaced. A degraded battery doesn’t hold a charge as well, so it will drain faster. A new battery will improve the overall life of the battery.

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