Basics of Wall Charger Wattage & The Essential Features Basics of Wall Charger Wattage & The Essential Features

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Basics of Wall Charger Wattage & The Essential Features

4th, August 2023

All of our beloved smartphones, laptops, tablets, and accessories have rechargeable batteries to keep them powered for continuous use. They are charged by cables that plug into your outlets via USB wall chargers. The type of wall charger you have can greatly impact how fast your device will or will not charge.


As experts in digital technology, we can help you understand the different types of cables, determine the amount of wattage required, and get the right wall charger for your device.


The key to fast charging and less time plugged into the wall is in the equipment you use. Below we will detail everything you need to know to maximise your device’s battery life.


Introduction to Wall Chargers 

When it comes to your phone’s battery, not all wall chargers are created equally. While most new devices today use the same USB-C standard, the specifications are important for faster charging speeds. Any compatible charger will charge your device, but it may be very slow to charge.


What is Wall Charger Wattage & Why Does it Matter for my Device? 

Electrical power is measured in watts (W), which quantifies the rate of energy transfer. A wall charger's wattage determines how much power it can provide, and more watts typically mean faster charging and multi-device charging capabilities. However, it's important to note that using a wall charger with a higher wattage than the maximum allowed by the device won't necessarily result in faster charging. For example, if an Apple device is designed to use a 20W charger, using a 45W wall charger won't draw more than 20W and won't charge the device any faster than the maximum allowed.


What is Fast Charging & Why Do I Need it?

To enable fast charging on your device, first confirm that your device supports fast charging and determine the maximum wattage that it can handle. Then, purchase a wall charger and cable that support this wattage. Fast charging occurs when your device is charged at a faster rate than a standard charge, and it requires a few things: (1) a device capable of fast charging, (2) the correct power sources, and (3) knowledge of the max charging speed of your device(s).


A device’s maximum charge speed will usually be displayed in watts and will differ depending on the device. If you charge your device with a wall charger that has a higher wattage than the device accepts, the device will only charge at its max fast charging speed.


Over Powering vs Under Powering Your Device. How does it affect the Charging?

When it comes to charging your device, it's generally not a major concern for consumers to worry about overpowering their devices. Most wall chargers are designed to supply the appropriate power to a device, so the risk of excessive power is minimal. However, underpowering your device is a more common issue that can lead to problems such as slow charging or potential damage to the device components.


For instance, if you use a 45W charger on a device that only requires 20W, the device will only draw the necessary 20W, so there won't be any harm. However, using a 10W charger on a device with a minimum requirement of 20W can result in slow charging or even damage to the device or battery.


To ensure safe and efficient charging, it's still important to use a charger that meets the minimum power requirements of your device. Using a charger with lower power output than required can lead to suboptimal charging performance and potential damage. Therefore, it is recommended to use the charger that is specifically recommended for your device or one that matches or exceeds the minimum power requirements.


How many Watts should my USB Charger have?

To find out how much power you need in watts, look at your phone’s specifications or user manual. Charging power and capacity varies considerably, typically between 18-80W. 


Be sure to pick a charger that matches the charging standard and power requirement of your device. And don’t forget to double-check that your wall charger has enough wattage if you plan to charge multiple devices from it.


So Which Should I Choose? 

Cygnett is a global provider of digital accessories with over 200,000 retailers in 42 countries. We offer high-quality USB wall chargers that you can trust for every device. For those who need to fast charge two devices simultaneously, we recommend the 70W Dual Port GaN Wall Charger, which is compatible with phones, tablets, and USB-C laptops. For iPhone users, we recommend the 20w for an iPhone and 30w for an iPad or iPad Pro due to its compatibility across a range of devices, high wattage, and ability to boost charging from 0-50% in just 30 minutes on certain devices.



Wall Chargers For iPhones

As of November 2020, iPhones come with a USB-C-ended lightning cable with fast charging and compatibility with more common USB-C power adapters. The older USB-A-ended cables will still work if you have a compatible adapter.  

iPhone Generational Differences & Their Standards 


An iPhone's battery life, video playback, and charging capabilities improve from model to model, in addition to cosmetic upgrades like size, display, and cameras. To enjoy these features fully, it's important to use an iPhone wall charger that supports fast charging.


Apple recommends using a wall charger with a minimum of 20W for fast charging, so any Cygnett USB-C block with 20W or more will fast charge your device. It's worth noting that the charging speed may vary depending on the generation of your phone and the wattage of your charger and cable.


USB-C to Lighting iPhone Generations 


Apple has discontinued power adapters in the packaging for iPhone users, so you will need to connect the lightning cable (included) to a third-party wall charger. Cygnett has iPhone wall chargers made for compatibility with Apple devices. 


The iPhone socket is known as Lightning. Each phone comes with a lightning cable with USB-C on the tail end. USB-C is the newest generation of chargers that tops up devices faster than USB-A models. 


Another advantage of USB-C chargers is that they can work with both Android and Apple devices. So, if a Samsung wall charger’s watts are enough to fast charge your device, you can use that charger with your Apple cable to charge your iPhone.


USB-A to Lighting iPhone Generations 


USB-A is declining in popularity but was once the standard charger type. Most portable chargers will also have a USB-A charging port because they are that common. Older iPhone users should still have many USB-A options (for now) and be able to easily locate iPhone wall chargers for their devices. Regardless of which iPhone you have, we have lightning cables for older and newer models.



Wall Chargers Androids 

In contrast to Apple devices, Androids have featured various charging connectors over the years. While USB-C has become the predominant charging standard for most Android devices today, it's worth noting that other USB types have been used in the past.


However, it's important to mention that the inclusion of adapters in the box may vary depending on the specific Android device and manufacturer. While it's true that many Android devices used to come with adapters to accommodate different charging connectors, it's becoming increasingly common for high-end and new Android phones to no longer include chargers in the box.

Android Generational Differences & Their Standards 


Of the different generations, there are USB-A to Micro-USB, USB-A to USB-C, and USB-C to USB-C. Until switching to USB-C, Androids had used micro-USB type B for charging and data transferring since its introduction in 2008.


USB-C to USB-C Android Generations 


USB-C to USB-C cables are used for charging, syncing, and transferring between two USB-C-compatible devices. For example, you can pair your new Android device with the old one to retrieve and store your old media on your new device. Eventually, USB-C will replace all other charger types, so only one universal cable will be needed to charge all devices. 


USB-A to USB-C Android Generations 


Most phones after 2015 use USB-C cables. The USB-A to USB-C cable is faster and more powerful than older USB types. The USB-A end easily plugs into most wall chargers. Visually it may look similar to a micro-USB but it is slightly thicker, more symmetrical, and more oval-shaped. The design of the head helps to prevent damage from occurring inside the port because you can insert it into your device either way. 


USB-A to Micro-USB Android Generations 


With the same USB-A connector in the wall adapter, the micro-USB cable is an older generation of cable that reached its height between 2008 and 2015. There are two types of micro-USB cables: micro-A and micro-B. The vast majority of smartphones use micro-B.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the Benefits of Having a High Wattage Wall Charger? 

While it's true that cable transfer speeds play a role in charging, wattage is still an important factor in determining how fast your device will charge, sync, and transfer data. Most phones require at least 20W for fast charging to work. That's why Cygnett offers a range of premium wall chargers for all device types, so you can find one that meets your specific needs.


How to tell if your Phone is Fast Charging? 

A fast charger will indicate it is charging with a lightning bolt in the charging symbol. You can also look at the battery under “settings” and look for fast charging. Remember, not all phones support fast charging, especially older ones.


Can Wall Chargers Damage Battery Devices? 

Luckily, the power rating of a charger does not affect your device’s battery life. A high-wattage charger will never supply more than the amount of current that your device can take.



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