We’ve all been there — you’re about to leave the house and your iPhone is seriously running out of battery. You’ll probably just plug your phone in and get as much juice as you possibly can in a small amount of time. Fast charging makes that a simple task, if your phone’s battery is really low — but when your iPhone already has a decent charge, you’ll find it charges pretty slowly no matter what you plug it into.
There’s a way, however, to get your iPhone 14 Pro Max to 100% that extra bit faster.
What is fast charging, and why can’t my charger do it?
Fast charging uses a newer USB technology called USB Power Delivery (USB PD). This technology is only available in USB-C connections, which can route power as well as data and are suitable for charging a variety of devices. It’s a very flexible and efficient option that can optimize power management. By upgrading to a USB PD connection, you can achieve charging speeds far faster than Apple’s older Lightning cable connections.
You see, the 5W charger that came with most iPhones is not capable of fast charging. It can supply enough power for a basic overnight recharge, but it’s not able to transmit a charge fast enough to juice anything with a higher-capacity battery.
If you’re wondering how much faster fast charging is, Apple claims it will refill up to 50% of your iPhone 14 Pro Max battery in a mere 30 minutes. This means you can finally say goodbye to waiting around for your phone to charge, and bid farewell to overnight charging entirely. Needless to say, fast charging will ease the anxiety you get when you’re about head out the door and realize your phone is at 10%.
Fixes for iPhone 14 Pro Max not fast charging
1. Use USB-C cable
Fast charging works when you use an Apple USB-C to Lightning cable.
2. Use powerful power adapter
Along with the fast charging cable, you’ll need a special charging block, because what’s an Apple product without a bunch of peripherals? It’s a 20-watt adapter with a USB-C port, rather than the usual USB-A port. If you’re just looking to fast charge an iPhone 14 Pro Max, then the $29 official 20-watt USB-C power adapter is all you need.
If you have a newer MacBook, then you may also already have a power adapter that can handle all your fast-charging needs. Many MacBooks — specifically, 2015 models and newer — use USB-C-compatible charging blocks, and you can use one of these to fast charge your iPhone 14 Pro Max when combined with the USB-C to Lightning cable. The most common is the official 30W USB-C power adapter, and it can easily pull double-duty if required.
If you’re rocking a MacBook Pro, then you might have a charger that’s even more powerful than the 29W or 30W varieties, and Apple has confirmed that even the 61W and 87W versions are safe to use with your iPhone 14 Pro Max. Remember, the amount of power used is regulated by your iPhone, so it will never draw more than it can handle and damage itself — and the charger can’t force your phone to accept a wattage that’s too high for it to handle.
Note: If you’re buying an adapter just for fast charging, there’s no need to buy an adapter stronger than 20W; iPhone 14 Pro Max can only handle a 20W charge, so a more powerful charger would just cost more money and not offer any extra benefits. However, it would add future-proofing, if you’re worried about that.
3. Turn off optimized Battery charging
To charge your iPhone 14 Pro Max to 100% quicker, open up the Settings app, head to the Battery Health section, then toggle off the Optimized Battery Charging switch. That seems counterintuitive, but it really works — here’s why.
Turns out, it’s actually not all that healthy for your phone’s battery to continuously charge straight to 100%, and sit at 100%, all of the time. According to Apple, batteries can age more or less depending on factors like charging patterns and temperature — and the more they age, the less charge they can actually hold. Leaving your phone at 100% on a charger for hours and hours on end accelerates that degradation. In other words, the real-world effects of quickly charging your battery and leaving it at 100% over and over again are actually tangible. Even if that impact won’t be felt for a year or two into the phone’s life.
Use this feature sparingly — but when you need it, it’s wonderful to have the option.
4. Avoid using Wireless Chargers
What wireless chargers gain in convenience, they lose in efficiency. When you need a quick charge, it’s best to avoid this option. Even though wireless charging is handy, it’s not as fast as traditional wired charging.
If in doubt, look at the power figures of Apple’s own MagSafe Charger. The product page notes that it provides up to 15W charge, compared to the 30W or even 60W chargers that use traditional cables.
In tests, Consumer Reports found a notable time difference as well. Apple’s MagSafe wireless charger took two hours and 36 minutes to charge an iPhone 14 Pro Max. In contrast, Apple’s stock Lightning cable for the phone needed only one hour and 45 minutes to accomplish the same task.
So use wireless if you must, but avoid it when getting as much battery power as possible in a short time is your goal.
5. Final charging tips
Regardless of which charger you buy, make sure to follow these speed and safety tips:
- Never charge near a heater, direct sunlight, or any other source of warmth. Heat, which isn’t suitable for your battery, can damage it while it charges and lead to increased charging time.
- You can always put your iPhone into Airplane Mode to help it speed up charge time. Or, if possible, turn it off altogether.
- Generally, a wall or power strip outlet will charge faster than a computer can.
how to charge iPhone 12 Pro faster: now you know
These tips should help your iPhone 12 Pro charge faster so you can avoid emergency power situations in most cases. You can experiment with what combination of methods works best for you.