Fastest charging phones (2016 edition)

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While the phone is probably the single modern device that has undergone the most profound and significant change in the past 20 or so years, there is one component inside it that has not caught up with the fast progress in chip and camera designs. We're talking about the Lithium-Ion battery, of course, the trusty power source that keeps your device running.

Well... at least most people considered it trust-worthy until the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 fiasco, which made us realize that even a technology as proven as the Lithium-Ion battery cell when pushed to its limits can malfunction in shocking ways.

And pushing the technology is what many did with one particular aspect of batteries: fast charging. Qualcomm, maker of the popular on Android Snapdragon chips, has introduced its fast Quick Charge 3.0 at the end of 2015, and many flagship phones this year support it. There are also others with their own, proprietary fast charging solutions. At the end of the day, though, it is clear that there are significant advantages coming with quick charging: you no longer need to put your phone for a full night charge. You can just give it a 30-minute recharge at lunch or in the evening, and get a significant battery re-fill.

With all this in mind, we looked at all the major flagships in 2016 to find the ones that are fastest to recharge and won't keep you waiting long. Take a look.

hoursLower is better
Apple iPhone 7 Plus
3h 17 min
Apple iPhone 7
2h 21 min
Apple iPhone SE
2h 35 min
Samsung Galaxy S7 edge
1h 39 min
Samsung Galaxy S7
1h 28 min
Google Pixel XL
1h 58 min
Google Pixel
1h 59 min
LG V20
1h 26 min
LG G5
1h 16 min
Motorola Moto Z Force Droid Edition
1h 50 min
Motorola Moto Z Droid Edition
1h 12 min
OnePlus 3
1h 14 min
HTC 10
1h 40 min
Sony Xperia XZ
2h 54 min
Huawei P9
2h 26 min
Xiaomi Mi 5
2h 19 min

Right from the onset, it's clear that there are really three phones that are in a league of their own when it comes to fast charging: the Moto Z Droid Edition, the OnePlus 3, and the LG G5, each of them taking around or less than an hour and 15 minutes to get fully re-charged from 0 to 100%.

That's a remarkable score, especially when you consider that battery charging is not a linear process: you get a faster charge at first, while the last few percentage points are the slowest to fill up.

It's also worth pointing out that the world's best selling flagship phone, the iPhone 7, still does not support any form of fast charging and takes a painfully slow 2 hours and 20 minutes to recharge fully. The iPhone 7 Plus takes even longer: an excruciating three hours and 17 minutes for a full charge. This is definitely one key area where Apple's devices seem to lag behind Android phones significantly.

With all this in mind, we were also curious to see whether there is any improvement in phone charging speeds this year when compared against the previous one.

hoursLower is better
Apple iPhone 6s Plus
2h 45 min
Apple iPhone 6s
2h 30 min
Samsung Galaxy Note5
1h 21 min
Samsung Galaxy S6 edge
1h 23 min
Samsung Galaxy S6
1h 18 min
LG V10
1h 5 min
LG G4
2h 7 min
HTC One M9
1h 46 min
HTC One A9
1h 50 min
Google Nexus 6P
1h 29 min
Google Nexus 5X
1h 40 min
OnePlus 2
2h 30 min
OnePlus X
2h 1 min
Huawei P8
3h
Sony Xperia Z5
2h 36 min

Interestingly, looking back at the most notable phones from last year, we see that the LG V10 stands tall and is actually one of the fastest phones we have to date: it was faster than all of 2016 devices, taking just an hour and 5 minutes to get its battery fully recharged.

Overall, we do see some differences, and it does seem that there are some slight improvements. Let's see whether those lagging sorely behind can catch up with modern fast-charging speeds in 2017.

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