Quick Charge 5 is official: Qualcomm says up to 50% charge in just 5 minutes and 100% in 15 minutes
Qualcomm pioneered smartphone quick charge solutions when they released Quick Charge 1 (QC) back in 2013. Then the successive QC2, QC3, and QC4 from 2015 – 2017 managed to iteratively improve on the specification and design, progressing up to a 2.5 times improvement in charging speed.
The new Qualcomm’s Quick Charge 5 hardware — announced today — allows for 100W+ charging in the same footprint as the previous QC4 equipment. The increased voltage tolerance and hardware changes allow QC5 to be up to 10x faster than the original quick charge specification, and 4x faster than the previous generation QC4. During the presentation by Josh Warner, Director of Product Management for Battery Charging at Qualcomm, it was claimed that QC5 is the “world’s fastest commercial charging solution.”
The headlining feature is its ability to take a 4500 mAH battery from 0 – 50% in just five minutes, or to give a full charge from 0 – 100% in about 15 minutes (Note: both 4000 mAH and 4500 mAH were shown during the presentation, but 4500 mAH appears in the press material and the small print about the claims). QC5 is up to 70% more efficient than QC4, and the surface temperature of the phone can be up to 10 C cooler, which means we could assume that all the related hardware could also run cooler under the new specification when given the right conditions. There are 17 different protection measures for voltage, current, temperature, and time.
To achieve the full advertised performance, QC5 requires the battery to be split into two packs in series to allow twice the voltage to be supplied while keeping current at a lower level to minimise temperature issues. Qualcomm’s battery saver technology is supported for reducing wear on the battery, but we suspect that manufacturer implementations (e.g. Sony Battery Care) would still be beneficial here.