While the Apple Watch Series 7 didn’t have longer battery life, it did offer faster charging — at least, until last week. Some users are now complaining that the feature has stopped working after updating to watchOS 8.5, according to an 9to5Mac report†
Fast charging is exclusive to the Series 7. With this, Apple says the watch’s battery can go from 0 to 80 percent in about 45 minutes. However, Series 7 owners on redditapples support forumsand MacRumors† forum say their watches are now charging at a snail’s pace. A few Reddit users claimed that the Watch would only charge about 5 percent in 15-20 minutes. Meanwhile, a user on the Apple forum claimed that the Watch charged only 5 percent per hour. For context, Apple says that an Apple Watch SE can access 80 percent in 1.5 hours†
Initially, the problem seemed to only occur with those using Belkin’s 3-in-1 BoostCharge Pro. However, some have since claimed that the problem extends to Apple’s own fast-charging puck as well. The edge contacted Apple and Belkin for comment, but did not receive an immediate response.
That said, while 9to5Mac says he has been able to confirm the problem, The edge was unable to replicate the problem using a 41mm Series 7 with a fast charging puck and 20W Apple charging brick.
Battery life remains one of the Apple Watch’s main “hurdles”. Since the first iteration of the Watch, Apple has stuck to its estimate of 18 hours on a single charge. (In practice, it might take a little longer, though you’ll still need to charge it daily.) Fast Charging was meant to strategically plan when to charge your watch, especially for those who might want to use it for sleep tracking.
While convenient, fast charging on the Series 7 requires users to jump through some hoops. The Series 7 comes with a compatible fast-charging puck, but you’ll need to supply your own USB-C brick. That brick must also meet Apple’s specifications (which you can see here† While older Apple Watch chargers work with the Series 7, you won’t get faster charging speeds. Also, if you use a third-party charger, it probably won’t support fast charging. Currently, there are only two third-party Apple Watch chargers that support the feature — and both are from Belkin.
Hopefully there will be a fix soon. In the meantime, you may want to factor in some extra charging time.