iOS: iPhone 8 and iPhone X owners using wireless charging pads to power their devices are about to receive a pleasant surprise thanks to a software update: Apple’s upcoming iOS 11.2 will add support for faster wireless charging for the Qi-compatible smartphones. Updating your phone isn’t enough to boost your charging speed, however. You’ll need the proper wireless charging pad to take advantage of the faster charging feature.
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According to MacRumors, the 11.2 update will bring support for Qi wireless charging at a rate of 7.5 watts, an improvement over the current 5-watt limit allowed by iOS 11.1.1.
You’ll Need a Compatible Charger
Not every wireless charging pad supports the faster 7.5-watt charging rate, meaning you might need to shell out for a new model if you want to take advantage of faster speeds. Right now, Apple sells two third-party wireless charging pads that are capable of hitting that 7.5-watt charging rate. Samsung‘s $99 9-watt charging pad, as well as RavPower‘s $US50 ($65) 10-watt charging pad both support even faster charging speeds, and are compatible with the iPhone 8 and iPhone X due to the Qi wireless charging standard used in smartphones. Apple’s working on its own AirPower wireless charging pad, one that will charge up to three devices at a time (such as your iPhone, AirPods and Apple Watch).
Wired Charging is Still Faster
Faster charging is pretty much always a plus, especially when it comes to wireless charging. Still, wireless charging is markedly slower than direct charging via USB cable, and even with that boost to 7.5 watts, the iPhone 8 and iPhone X will charge more slowly using wireless charging pads compared to the Samsung Galaxy S8, which supports 9-watt quick-charging with the proper charging pad (though it’s still considerably slower than wired charging).
In addition, there’s also the factor that wireless charging usually requires you to place your phone on a charging pad, making it impossible to use and charge at the same time (unless you want to hover over your phone like a weirdo). Still, if you’re a supporter of wireless charging, faster charging speeds can only encourage you to embrace the cable-free future (and will probably get you to stop fiddling with your phone).