Earlier this year in conjunction with the release of the Snapdragon 835 processor, Qualcomm also announced they were going to introduce a new Quick Charge 4 scheme for when devices do need to be recharged. In some of our tests, like with the Samsung Galaxy S8+ that features the Snapdragon 835, we found power management to be greatly improved compared to chips from just two generations ago. However, today’s phones are driving more advanced hardware which offsets some of those gains and of course, inevitably devices need to be recharged. Sometimes that needs to be done quickly and that is when these quick charging technologies become important. In today’s announcement, Qualcomm shares their plan to take another small step with Quick Charge 4.0 technology with an incremental improvement they have named Quick Charge 4+.
Devices that earn the Quick Charge 4+ designation will benefit from being able to charge at up to 3 degrees Celsius cooler than with other technologies, they will charge up to 15% faster than the current Quick Charge 4 rate, and they will be 30% more efficient in doing so. Probably the one item of most interest is the speed and when Qualcomm says Quick Charge 4+ is 15% faster, that is to get a device from 0 to 50% charged, which takes 15 minutes for a 2750 mAh battery with Quick Charge 4.
Qualcomm also notes that besides meeting the performance targets, manufacturers of devices that want the Quick Charge 4+ designation will also have to incorporate Dual Charge, which is a technology to incorporate a second power management circuit to divide the charge current; use Intelligent Thermal Balancing to move current to the coolest path available; and some Advanced Safety Features to monitor temps of a case and connector simultaneously to help prevent overheating, short-circuits or damage to the Type-C connector.
If you are a consumer looking for the benefits of Quick Charge 4+ technology, do not look at just the target device you are thinking of investing in, like a smartphone. You will also need to check the accessories like the docks or charging cables to make sure they have also obtained the Quick Charge 4+ designation.