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Sunday, April 11, 2010

IPad charging via USB or FireWire?

Well, this is my second post directly from my iPad.

And with it, a short post continuing to explore other ways to recharge your iPad Rather than using the 10w wall charger that ships in the box with your iPad. I had previously mentioned my experience with trying to get the iPad to charge on my Mac Mini via USB 2.0 connection, in which it simply did not charge.

Subsequent posts on the Interenet (like this one: say it actually charges, just really slow. Still, my Apple Genius at the Apple Store warned me very specifically when I purchased my iPad...don't use the iPhone 5w wall charger and don't use a USB cable that is not fully powered. Why? Because apparently the lower power and the trickle charging will dramatically reduce the battery life on your iPad. With no known way to fix it, not sure I am ready to test it yet. And the fact that it could either damage you iPad or at least the life of the battery, I do not recommend it for anyone.

Still, an additional option was presented by a reader of this blog...there are some people having succeses using a FireWire cable to not only connect, but also charge the iPad. So, I picked up a FireWire cable for an iPod/iPhone/iPad to test it out. After holding my breath for a moment, I got an unsupported accessory notice on my iPad. Waiting for a couple of minutes, theniPad neither charged nor syncing on my Mac Mini.

Based on that, I am still searching for a way other than the wall charger to charge up the iPad. Any other ideas out there?


Bob said...

Ken, YES IT IS HAZARDOUS TO IPAD'S BATTERY LIFE to use an underpowered charger on the ipads, and, for that matter, on any device that uses any form of lithium ion batteries! -- Check out an excellent indepth look at the development of lit-ion batteries on wikipedia: this link expecially about recharging of them, section 7: edit this url for (characters) in place of the parenthesis parts:

http:(right slash)(right slash) slash)wiki(right slash)Lithium-ion_battery(pound sign)Charging_procedure

There IS A MAXIMUM AND MINIMUM VOLTAGE below which and above which the life of the battery is killed, shortened, or stuck.

Worthwhile is the temperature range discussion: high TEMPERATURE IN closed up automobiles can kill over 20percent of the lifetime of the batteries. Ipad has two lithium batteries, thus needing the heftier (different) charger than the iphone, and a cool environment while charging.

(I wonder if ipads could have been used in "Desert Storm" if they would have been out then... but the Wiki article did say there are more temperature tolerant versions, but heavier and more expensive I would think... not an official wondering or comment...)

Hope this helps save your batteries.