News

Fast Charging Is Useful, but Comes at a Cost

feel the heat

central thesis

  • The charger can now charge your phone in minutes instead of hours.
  • Heat is the enemy of batteries, and “wireless” chargers generate a lot of heat.
  • If you don’t need a full charge, keeping it below 80% will help keep your battery healthy.

Contactless charging of smartphone at home

Yagi Studios/Getty Images

Two new phone charging technologies appeared this week: Oppo’s 150-watt Firehose charger and Honor’s 100-watt wireless charger. But can that speed be really good for a cell phone?

Currently, a typical Qi “wireless” charging can only handle about 7.5 to 10 watts of power, much of which is lost as heat damaging the battery. Fast charging via cable is now becoming common. The iPhone has been around for a while, but Oppo’s 150W technology is far more powerful than a professional laptop charger.

Solar Labs Lifewire’s Akshay VR told Lifewire in an email “Fast charging of a battery is more than discharging as much voltage and current as possible. Instead, charging a battery is divided into two phases: constant current and constant voltage.”

quick and easy

Lithium-ion batteries, found in virtually every rechargeable device from laptops to cell phones, hate heat. You can charge it as fast as you like, but as it gets hot it does great damage and shortens battery life.

But fast charging itself isn’t necessarily a bad thing. The trick is to pump current until the discharged battery reaches about 80% of its capacity. Then switch to trickle charging to go the rest.

“Battery fast charging is more than just supplying as much voltage and current as possible.”

“Fast-charging systems use a constant-current step by supplying as much current to the battery as possible before reaching its maximum voltage,” Akshay explains. “As a result, fast charging technology is most efficient when the battery is less than half, but the impact on charging time is less when the battery reaches 80%. Also, constant current charging is most detrimental to the long-term health of the battery. Higher continuous voltages combined with heat further impair battery life.”

Think of it like filling a water bottle. You can start by turning the faucet fully on, but when the bottle is full, reduce the amount of water to avoid spilling water. great. Not the best analogy, but you get the point.

But it is fast charging. Used correctly, you can get a useful charge in minutes. AirPods, Apple Pencil, and smartwatches can turn a few minutes of charge into hours of charge by avoiding the risk.

wireless world

But wireless is an entirely different game. The same principle applies to batteries, but the problem lies in their absurdly inefficient delivery method. A wireless pad is actually an induction pad. The coil in the base creates a magnetic field (hence the name), which induces an electric current in the coil inside the phone.

This trade loses power in all sorts of places. First, the coil must be perfectly aligned so that it either works properly or not at all. That’s why Apple’s MagSafe charger uses magnets to align things.

This inefficiency converts electricity into heat, which is like kryptonite for phone batteries.

“Wireless chargers are not good for your phone or the planet,” Eloise Tobler, an electronics recycling expert, told Lifewire in an email. “Some tests show that wireless chargers actually require about 45% more power than cables to charge a device In general, using these pads makes the phone a little more difficult to operate, which can generate more heat and reduce the overall life of the battery.Wireless charging pads are also much more environmentally expensive and are quite difficult to recycle. .”

take care of you

So how can you protect your phone? First, use the manufacturer’s charger. If not, get a decent one rather than the first cheap model you find on Amazon.

Igor Spinella, CEO of wireless charging technology company Eggtronic, told Lifewire in an email: “When customers buy charging accessories, make sure the product is Qi and FCC certified.” Make sure it has quality materials and quality thermal management. [Avoid] Very cheap devices on the market [as they] Dangerous or limits the battery life of your smartphone.”

And remember that you can always be patient and use a low-power charger or wait for the phone to charge overnight.


More information

Fast Charging Is Useful, but Comes at a Cost

Feel the heat

Key Takeaways
Chargers can now fill your phone in minutes, not hours.
Heat is the enemy of batteries, and “wireless” chargers create a lot of it.
If you don’t need a full charge, keeping it below 80% will help your battery stay healthy.
Yagi-Studio / Getty Images

Two wild new phone-charging technologies showed up this week: Oppo’s 150-Watt firehose of a charger and Honor’s 100 Watt wireless charger. But can this speed really be good for your phone?

Currently, regular Qi “wireless” charging can only manage around 7.5-10 Watts of power, and a lot of that goes to waste as battery-damaging heat. Meanwhile, fast-charging via a wire is becoming more common—the iPhone has done it for a while—but Oppo’s 150 W tech is more powerful even than pro laptop chargers. 

“Fast charging a battery is more than just dumping as much voltage and current as possible at it,” Akshay VR of Solar Labs told Lifewire via email. “Instead, battery charging is divided into two phases: constant current and constant voltage.”

Fast and Loose

Lithium-ion batteries, the kind found in almost all our rechargeable devices, from laptop to phone, hate heat. You can charge them as fast as you like, but if they get hot while doing it, that’s when the big damage occurs, and that’s what shortens battery life.

But fast-charging itself isn’t necessarily bad. The trick is to pump the electricity into the empty battery until it reaches around 80% of its capacity. Then, you switch to trickle charging to go the rest of the way.

“Fast charging a battery is more than just dumping as much voltage and current as possible at it.”

“Fast charging systems take advantage of the constant current phase by putting as much current into the battery as possible before it reaches its peak voltage,” explains Akshay. “As a result, rapid charging technologies are most efficient while your battery is less than half full, but their impact on charge time diminishes once the battery reaches 80 percent. In addition, steady current charging is the least harmful to the battery’s long-term health. Higher continuous voltage, combined with heat, is more damaging to battery life.”

Think of it like filling up a water bottle. You can crank the faucet to full to start, but as that bottle gets fuller, you turn down the flow, so it doesn’t spill. OK, it’s not the best analogy, but you get the gist. 

But that’s fast charging. When used properly, it lets you get a useful charge in minutes. By staying out of the danger zone, AirPods, Apple Pencil, and smartwatches manage to grab a few hours of charge from a few minutes of charge time. 

Wireless World

Wireless is a whole other game, though. The same principles apply to the battery, but the problem is in the delivery method, which is absurdly inefficient. A wireless pad is really an induction pad. A coil in the base creates a magnetic field, which then induces (hence the name) a current in a coil inside the phone. 

This transaction loses power in all kinds of places. For a start, the coils need to line up perfectly to work well, or at all. That’s why Apple’s MagSafe charger uses magnets to line things up. 

This inefficiency turns electricity into heat, which is like Kryptonite to phone batteries.

“Wireless chargers aren’t great for either your phone or the planet,” electrical recycling expert Eloise Tobler told Lifewire via email. “Some tests have found that wireless chargers actually need around 45% more power than a cable to charge a device. Generally speaking, when using these pads, your phone has to work that bit harder, which in turn generates more heat and can actually shorten the overall lifespan of your battery. Wireless charging pads also have a far bigger environmental cost and are quite difficult to recycle.”

Take Care

So how can you protect your phone? First, use the manufacturer’s charger. If not, buy something decent, not the first cheap model you found on Amazon. 

“When customers are shopping for a charging accessory, make sure the product is Qi and FCC certified,” Igor Spinella, CEO of wireless charging technology company Eggtronic, told Lifewire via email. “Ensure that it has high-quality materials and thermal management. [Avoid] extremely cheap devices sold on the market [as they] might be dangerous or limit the battery life of a smartphone.” 

And remember, you can always be patient and use a low-powered charger or simply wait to charge the phone overnight.

#Fast #Charging #Cost

Fast Charging Is Useful, but Comes at a Cost

Feel the heat

Key Takeaways
Chargers can now fill your phone in minutes, not hours.
Heat is the enemy of batteries, and “wireless” chargers create a lot of it.
If you don’t need a full charge, keeping it below 80% will help your battery stay healthy.
Yagi-Studio / Getty Images

Two wild new phone-charging technologies showed up this week: Oppo’s 150-Watt firehose of a charger and Honor’s 100 Watt wireless charger. But can this speed really be good for your phone?

Currently, regular Qi “wireless” charging can only manage around 7.5-10 Watts of power, and a lot of that goes to waste as battery-damaging heat. Meanwhile, fast-charging via a wire is becoming more common—the iPhone has done it for a while—but Oppo’s 150 W tech is more powerful even than pro laptop chargers. 

“Fast charging a battery is more than just dumping as much voltage and current as possible at it,” Akshay VR of Solar Labs told Lifewire via email. “Instead, battery charging is divided into two phases: constant current and constant voltage.”

Fast and Loose

Lithium-ion batteries, the kind found in almost all our rechargeable devices, from laptop to phone, hate heat. You can charge them as fast as you like, but if they get hot while doing it, that’s when the big damage occurs, and that’s what shortens battery life.

But fast-charging itself isn’t necessarily bad. The trick is to pump the electricity into the empty battery until it reaches around 80% of its capacity. Then, you switch to trickle charging to go the rest of the way.

“Fast charging a battery is more than just dumping as much voltage and current as possible at it.”

“Fast charging systems take advantage of the constant current phase by putting as much current into the battery as possible before it reaches its peak voltage,” explains Akshay. “As a result, rapid charging technologies are most efficient while your battery is less than half full, but their impact on charge time diminishes once the battery reaches 80 percent. In addition, steady current charging is the least harmful to the battery’s long-term health. Higher continuous voltage, combined with heat, is more damaging to battery life.”

Think of it like filling up a water bottle. You can crank the faucet to full to start, but as that bottle gets fuller, you turn down the flow, so it doesn’t spill. OK, it’s not the best analogy, but you get the gist. 

But that’s fast charging. When used properly, it lets you get a useful charge in minutes. By staying out of the danger zone, AirPods, Apple Pencil, and smartwatches manage to grab a few hours of charge from a few minutes of charge time. 

Wireless World

Wireless is a whole other game, though. The same principles apply to the battery, but the problem is in the delivery method, which is absurdly inefficient. A wireless pad is really an induction pad. A coil in the base creates a magnetic field, which then induces (hence the name) a current in a coil inside the phone. 

This transaction loses power in all kinds of places. For a start, the coils need to line up perfectly to work well, or at all. That’s why Apple’s MagSafe charger uses magnets to line things up. 

This inefficiency turns electricity into heat, which is like Kryptonite to phone batteries.

“Wireless chargers aren’t great for either your phone or the planet,” electrical recycling expert Eloise Tobler told Lifewire via email. “Some tests have found that wireless chargers actually need around 45% more power than a cable to charge a device. Generally speaking, when using these pads, your phone has to work that bit harder, which in turn generates more heat and can actually shorten the overall lifespan of your battery. Wireless charging pads also have a far bigger environmental cost and are quite difficult to recycle.”

Take Care

So how can you protect your phone? First, use the manufacturer’s charger. If not, buy something decent, not the first cheap model you found on Amazon. 

“When customers are shopping for a charging accessory, make sure the product is Qi and FCC certified,” Igor Spinella, CEO of wireless charging technology company Eggtronic, told Lifewire via email. “Ensure that it has high-quality materials and thermal management. [Avoid] extremely cheap devices sold on the market [as they] might be dangerous or limit the battery life of a smartphone.” 

And remember, you can always be patient and use a low-powered charger or simply wait to charge the phone overnight.

#Fast #Charging #Cost


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