iPhone XS Max Wired vs Wireless charging? What’s better for battery?

TrumpWon!

macrumors member
Original poster
Sep 10, 2017
74
68
I have always been using wireless charging with my Xs Max so far but heard that wireless charging may degrade your battery faster. Is there any truth to this? Has anyone noticed anything with regards to battery health and wireless charging vs cable? Thanks
 

seezar

macrumors regular
Jan 18, 2018
170
134
After almost a year with primarily charging my X wirelessly it only recently dropped to 99%.
 

akash.nu

macrumors G3
May 26, 2016
8,780
10,073
For long term usage wired charging is better. For short term, you probably won’t see a difference.
 

steve23094

macrumors 68030
Apr 23, 2013
2,696
1,484
According to this article https://www.zdnet.com/article/iphon...r-out-the-battery-faster-than-cable-charging/ wireless is a lot worse.

I’m about to purchase a new iPhone, upgrading from a 5s. I keep my phones a long time so overall longevity is very important to me. If the article is accurate that you’re constantly running off battery (because I know when charged full via Lightning it bypasses the battery) I can understand it how it would be a lot worse cycling your battery all the time.

But on the other hand the problem with my 5s is that the Lightning port is failing, I have to position the plug ‘just so’ to get a connection.

Can anyone confirm either way when fully charged on a wireless pad if the iPhone bypasses the battery?

I’m now unsure whether to go wireless or wired charging. Decisions, decisions.
 

enduro0125

macrumors regular
Apr 9, 2012
236
135
According to this article https://www.zdnet.com/article/iphon...r-out-the-battery-faster-than-cable-charging/ wireless is a lot worse.

I’m about to purchase a new iPhone, upgrading from a 5s. I keep my phones a long time so overall longevity is very important to me. If the article is accurate that you’re constantly running off battery (because I know when charged full via Lightning it bypasses the battery) I can understand it how it would be a lot worse cycling your battery all the time.

But on the other hand the problem with my 5s is that the Lightning port is failing, I have to position the plug ‘just so’ to get a connection.

Can anyone confirm either way when fully charged on a wireless pad if the iPhone bypasses the battery?

I’m now unsure whether to go wireless or wired charging. Decisions, decisions.
Almost 100% wireless charge on a one year old X.

Still at 100% battery health.
 

pdp1

macrumors regular
Oct 15, 2018
108
92
I think that article is a load of BS, and so do many experts. I'm not an expert but I am an engineer who programmed the power management chip for products of a major consumer electronics company and the following quote from the article alone was a big "WTF?!?!" to me:

"The issue is that when the iPhone is being charged using a cable, the phone is being powered by the cord (there is some load on the battery, but it's minimal), but when using wireless charging, the battery is what's powering the iPhone, with the wireless charger only being used to top up the battery"

The sentence is suggesting that when you are wireless charging the phone, the battery is simultaneously powering the phone and being charged at the same time. That is IMPOSSIBLE. You can't have a battery being "charged using a cable" and have "some load on the battery" at the same time. It's either current going in to the battery to charge or current leaving the battery to load/power the device, not both.

If wireless charging makes your battery "die faster" (big IF), it's definitely not for the reason that article suggests.
 

steve23094

macrumors 68030
Apr 23, 2013
2,696
1,484
I think that article is a load of BS, and so do many experts. I'm not an expert but I am an engineer who programmed the power management chip for products of a major consumer electronics company and the following quote from the article alone was a big "WTF?!?!" to me:

"The issue is that when the iPhone is being charged using a cable, the phone is being powered by the cord (there is some load on the battery, but it's minimal), but when using wireless charging, the battery is what's powering the iPhone, with the wireless charger only being used to top up the battery"

The sentence is suggesting that when you are wireless charging the phone, the battery is simultaneously powering the phone and being charged at the same time. That is IMPOSSIBLE. You can't have a battery being "charged using a cable" and have "some load on the battery" at the same time. It's either current going in to the battery to charge or current leaving the battery to load/power the device, not both.

If wireless charging makes your battery "die faster" (big IF), it's definitely not for the reason that article suggests.
What do you think about the possibility it’s using the battery a little bit, then charging the battery a little bit and so on? Because that would all add up in the end.
 

Newtons Apple

Suspended
Mar 12, 2014
22,759
15,221
Jacksonville, Florida
I charged my X with the Morphie charger that Apple sold me. After a full year of wireless charging at the end of the day, the battery health still showed 100%.

Using the same charger on my new MAX and hope to get the same results.

I thing either way is OK but due to the heat, I would not suggest fast charging, but that is just me.
 
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dmk1974

macrumors 68020
Sep 16, 2008
2,202
142
There's a lot of cheapo and expensive wireless chargers out there. What are the recommended ones to use with iPhones? Thanks.
 

pdp1

macrumors regular
Oct 15, 2018
108
92
What do you think about the possibility it’s using the battery a little bit, then charging the battery a little bit and so on? Because that would all add up in the end.
That scenario means the charger does not provide enough power to constantly charge the battery and power the phone at the same time. It doesn't matter if it's wired or wireless, if a charger can't provide enough current to charge the battery and run the device at the same time, the battery will have to help power the device, thus discharging at least a little despite having a charger connected.

EDIT:
To add to this discussion, there are a couple common scenarios where a charger will not provide enough current to power and charge a device, that is sleeping, at the same time:

1) The charger sucks and its maximum current output is really low. Considering a phone, while sleeping, shouldn't constantly use more current than in the 10-100mA range to maybe occasional peaks of higher than 100mA... a charger would really have to suck for this to happen. For reference, even the weak Apple charger that ships with iPhones supplies 1000mA.

2) You have a rogue app in the background eating up CPU cycles and causing it to consume a lot more current.
 
Last edited:

steve23094

macrumors 68030
Apr 23, 2013
2,696
1,484
That scenario means the charger does not provide enough power to constantly charge the battery and power the phone at the same time. It doesn't matter if it's wired or wireless, if a charger can't provide enough current to charge the battery and run the device at the same time, the battery will have to help power the device, thus discharging at least a little despite having a charger connected.
Oh. I meant once the battery is full. So it fully charges the battery, then uses the battery for a little bit, then tops it up to full again and so on (all throughout the night). I do know the Lightning charging bypasses the battery once fully charged, I just don’t know if the same thing happens with an iPhone on wireless.
[doublepost=1540399182][/doublepost]
Have you checked the lightning port for lint?

That solved my issue, and many others. :)
Yeah, checked that. Thanks. Also got out the compressed air and a little brush. My 5s has had a tough life but served me well. It’s just time to send it away to spend it’s last days on a farm.
 
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pdp1

macrumors regular
Oct 15, 2018
108
92
Oh. I meant once the battery is full. So it fully charges the battery, then uses the battery for a little bit, then tops it up to full again and so on (all throughout the night). I do know the Lightning charging bypasses the battery once fully charged, I just don’t know if the same thing happens with an iPhone on wireless.
If a battery is full and the phone is still connected to the charger, assuming the power management chip does its job right, it will always be "topping off" the battery, i.e. keeping it at 100%. This is because batteries have an inherent property to discharge slowly even if it isn't being used to power a device. However, the amount of power needed to do the topping off is EXTREMELY small. Again, this is regardless of wired or wireless charging. Everything else I said before still stands, the vast majority of the power coming from the charger will still go towards powering the phone.
 

Ph.D.

macrumors 6502a
Jul 8, 2014
548
465
In the current Apple universe, there is essentially no difference between wireless and wired charging as far as battery health and life is concerned. Apples "fast" wired charging is rather conservative (relatively low charging rates), and Apple's wireless charging rates are even more conservative.

What harms a Li-ion battery is charging too fast (excessively high current charging), pushing too much charge into a battery (over-charging it beyond a safe limit), charging at too high a temperature, and over-discharging it (draining it below a safe level). All of these are basically impossible with the intelligent battery management used today, especially given how conservative Apple is about batteries.

The bottom line: If you are using an Apple product, don't worry about how you are charging it. It won't make a difference.
 

Ralfi

macrumors 68040
Dec 22, 2016
3,406
2,194
Australia
Feel the same issue plagues wireless chargers as that of wired - cheap variants may impact your battery.

Difference being that wired chargers have had longer to mature so there are more decent ones out there.

Whereas wireless charging is still in its early stages in comparison, so you're going to find a lot of poor quality ones out there.

The cheapest I'd go is Anker, but chances are I'll end up investing in one by a more reputable brand.
 
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