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Is it OK if I keep charging my iPad and iPhone using the Mac USB ports? Or is it better to charge them with the supplied chargers?

I understand that charging slowly is better (though I'm not sure why), and I don't think it can get any slower than 1 day for the iPad using the USB port.

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3 Answers 3

up vote 8 down vote accepted

Charging more slowly won't make any difference, other than reducing the slight side effect of heat buildup on the iPad.

But it's perfectly OK to use lower powered ports such as those on your computer instead of the main powered chargers.

It's also perfectly OK to do it the other way around; you can charge your iPhone using the more powerful 20W iPad main adapter. It won't actually charge any faster than using the equivalent iPhone adapter, though. People will warn you that you'll damage your iPhone using this method, but that's simply a misunderstanding. 20W is the amount that the charger is capable of delivering, but if the phone doesn't ask for it, it doesn't get it. It's not all or nothing.

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So battery life does not benefit at all from slow charging? –  rid Jul 23 '12 at 8:28
    
Probably only in extreme situations, like when the operating temperature is already high, maybe even outside guidelines, where additional heat could be damaging. Modern batteries don't need to be carefully managed like they used to. –  stuffe Jul 23 '12 at 8:59

It's not any better or any worse just slower. Personally I'd use the mains supply as its much quicker.

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If you have both options, you should prefer the wall charging method. The USB charging is not only slow but also not as efficient as the wall charging.

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