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Can You Use AirPods Charger for iPhone?

With so many cables around the house, things might get mixed. Soon, compatibility becomes a serious concern, especially between the two devices you use the most: your smartphone and your precious pods. So, can you use AirPods charger for iPhone?

It’s possible to use the lightning cable that comes with AirPods to charge your iPhone and vice versa. However, the fast charging feature won’t function while using an iPhone’s cable with AirPods cases.

In this post, we’ll dig deeper into why the lighting cables are compatible with both Apple devices and what kind of charging performance you can expect if you make the switch.

AirPods ChargerLightning to USB-C or Lightning to USB-A cable, depending on the generation
CompatibilityLightning cables are interchangeable between iPhones, iPads, AirPods cases, and Magic Keyboards
Fast ChargingSupported by newer iPhone models with compatible adapters, but not guaranteed for AirPods cases
AirPods with Lightning CableAll AirPods generations, including those with wireless charging, come with a Lightning cable for charging

Why Can You Use AirPods Charger for iPhone?

You can plug the charging cable that came with your AirPods into your iPhone (and other Apple products) without issue.

Here’s why:

AirPods Come With Cables Only

When people say chargers, they usually mean the adapter or the dock that goes into the outlets in the wall.

In that sense, AirPods don’t typically come with chargers. Instead, you’ll find a lightning to USB-C or lightning to USB-A cable included, depending on the generation.

To charge the AirPods, you’d plug this cable into either an adapter or a USB port to charge up your AirPod case, which would pass on the charges to the pods.

Lightning Connecters Are Interchangeable

So, AirPods come with a lighting cable, but how does the iPhone’s charging compatibility fit into all this?

Down to the core, all lightning cables that come with an Apple product are pretty much the same.

They all have the 8-pin connector heads on one side instead of the old 30-pin model. This unified design means that you can use it for the AirPods case, iPhones, iPads, and even Magic Keyboards!

Read more: Can I wear AirPods while running?

Do AirPod Cables Support Fast Charging?

Newer models on the iPhone line are optimized for fast charging with a 50% jump in 30 minutes. This feature is a nice little addition when you’re trying to get some juice in your battery before you head out.

All you need is to use a compatible cable with an adapter starting at 18W and up to 96W outputs. So, you might be wondering if you can use the AirPods charging setup with your iPhone to get a similar quick battery boost and vice versa.

While lightning cables are compatible with both AirPods cases and iPhones, this isn’t always the case with fast charging.

Sadly, this means you can’t expect the cable that came with your iPhone to give your AirPods the same fast charging experience.

That’s because of a nifty little circuit called power management. This circuit limits the output you get from the charger to what the device demands.

Since the AirPods mostly require lower output, the fast charger will be throttled. As a result, it’ll take pretty much the same charging time as the regular lighting cable to get your AirPods case to a full charge.

That said, Apple does recommend plugging a cable from an iPhone’s kit to a USB port on a Mac if you want to slightly boost the charging speed on your AirPods case.

So, you might want to give this trick a shot when you need to fill up the AirPods in a pinch!

Read more: How many AirPods can you connect to one phone?


Do All AirPods Come With Lighting Cables?

We’ve covered that all lighting cables by apple carry the same 8-pin connector head on one end. The difference might only be limited to variations like whether you’ll get a USB-A or USB-C side.

Yet, many people wonder if they’ll get a lighting cable with any AirPods package. After all, specific models support wireless charging. In this sense, it wouldn’t be an overreach to think that they’ll be missing the wired charging feature.

Even the MagSafe and wireless charging cases have a lightning slot for wired charging through compatible cables.

So, no matter which AirPods generation you get, you’ll still be able to hook up the case to a regular USB port. This extra port adds more convenience since wireless charging mats still aren’t as widespread as USB ports.

Maybe in the near future, we’ll see AirPods cases without any lighting connectors as Apple pushes the notion of wireless charging docks and mats further, though!

Wrap Up

So, can you use AirPods charger for iPhone?

The lighting cable is the same for all Apple products, and it can be used interchangeably between AirPods cases, iPhones, and iPads without much issue. After all, the power management circuit adjusts the output from the adapter based on the device’s required wattage.

However, fast charging features aren’t guaranteed as a part of the charging compatibility. Instead, it depends on the device’s capacity and the adapter’s wattage.

Just watch out for your battery health on your Apple devices and keep those cables from getting tangled!