Your iPhone is about to get a powerful free upgrade

Apple iPhones are popular for many reasons, with their premium look and feel and great cameras, as well as incredibly useful features and apps like AirDrop and FaceTime. But one of the best things about the iPhone is the long software support, which often will see models updated with the latest new features for up to seven years after release.

It means older iPhones are continuously getting better, and very soon the iPhone 13 and iPhone 14 from 2021 and 2022 respectively will get a huge new boost when Apple releases the next version of iOS. According to The Verge, the iPhone 13 and 14 series phones will be able to charge twice as fast wirelessly when you update them to iOS 17.2, which is likely to come out as a free software update in December or January.

It’s all down to the standard of wireless charging found inside iPhones and the particular standard of the wireless charger you charge them with. Currently, only Apple-certified MagSafe wireless chargers will charge the iPhone 13 and iPhone 14 at the maximum speed of 15W. If you have a charger that is perfectly functional but is not certified by Apple, your phone will charge at a sluggish 7.5W.

iOS 17.2 will flick a software switch inside these older iPhones and make them compatible with the new Qi2 wireless charging standard that we are about to see hit the market in charges from accessory makers such as Anker. Anker has confirmed that its Qi2 chargers will be able to charge the iPhone 13, 14, and new iPhone 15 at 15W (though it’s unclear if this applies to the iPhone 13 mini, which could only wirelessly charge at 12.5W – and it looks like the iPhone 12 series will miss out altogether).

This all sounds like a small thing, but will mean that third-party chargers that use the new Qi2 standard won’t have to go through Apple’s certification process to juice up your iPhone at the maximum possible speed. Sure, you could always charge these phones at 15W if you had a MagSafe-certified charger, but they might not be available where you live or be within your budget. Plus if we see Qi2 being used in public places like coffee shops or in new cars, your existing phone will charge faster than if it was an old standard of Qi.

All of this comes with the caveat that it’s usually faster to charge an iPhone with a cable, if you have the right charger – all the latest iPhones charge faster with a 20W wired charger.

Apple hasn’t said anything about this change, but it looks hopeful that all it’ll take is for you to pick up a Qi2 charger when they go on sale in the near future, update your iPhone to iOS 17.2, and you’ll have doubled the speed of your phone’s wireless charging.

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