Can you charge a Nintendo switch with a phone charger? If you’re wondering whether it’s possible or recommended, then keep reading to find out!
The Nintendo Switch is one of the most popular gaming consoles in the world right now. In fact, it is so popular that it beat out the Xbox One, which released three years prior to the Switch, in terms of sales.
The Switch was released to much fanfare in 2017 and its innovative design and unique aesthetics soon made it a favorite amongst gamers of all ages.
Instead of releasing a fixed home console such as Xbox and Sony usually do, Nintendo came out with something unconventional.
They realized the lost potential of the Wii U Controller and instead decided to create a gaming console that is friendlier and, more importantly, respects the gamers’ time.
You can simply dock the console in the provided dock and play on your TV using an additional controller (or you can turn the JoyCons into a controller as well) or you can take out the console and use it in handheld mode.
This is arguably the most popular choice amongst players all over the globe. The Nintendo Switch is also future-friendly in the sense that the company released the console with USB-C support.
Instead of sticking with the age-old MicroUSB, the company took the step up and switched to USB-C, which is one of the main reasons why the Switch is so highly preferred by most people.
If you own a Nintendo Switch, you might be confused about which charger to use. You see, the console doesn’t come with a spare charger out of the box.
Instead, you get a USB-C adapter that you have to use when docking and you get a dock into which you can plug the console. When the console is plugged into the dock, it will automatically charge itself.
The JoyCons should be connected to the console while it’s in the dock as they will charge too. However, what about that USB-C port at the bottom? Doesn’t that mean that you can charge your console directly through a mobile phone charger?
USB-C cables and chargers are quite common, especially when you consider that almost every mobile phone nowadays supports this. So what if you could charge your Nintendo Switch with a mobile phone charger? Is that even a possibility?
Can You Charge A Nintendo Switch With A Phone Charger?
The Switch Charging Capabilities
The Nintendo Switch primarily charges on the USB-C PD standard at 15 V/ 2.6 A, which is around 39 W. But you should know that the Switch is an incredibly flexible device and supports standard USB charging of 5 V up to 3 A.
But while you can charge with your standard phone charger, there is a small trade-off. Simply put, the maximum charging rate that you are going to get is going to be less than 13 W, which is around one-third of the maximum possible rate.
This is obviously considerably slower than the USB-C PD standard since simply playing the Switch consumes around 5 to 10 W on average.
More importantly, you should know that the USB-C PD standard is not compatible with the QuickCharge 2.0 or 3.0 that are available in almost all mobile phones now.
So if you are thinking that you will be able to charge your Switch within an hour or so, you are highly mistaken.
However, the latest QuickCharge 4.0 models are compatible with the PD standard that is built into the Switch but these haven’t been released globally yet so you are going to have a hard time finding one in the market.
Even if you do, it’s going to be priced quite high, which means that you might be better off buying a replacement charger.
Even if you are able to get your hands on a genuine QC 4.0 charger, you should know that it’s only going to supply around 20 W, which is roughly half of the standard that the Switch is designed for.
Nintendo has made sure that their console remains ahead of its time and in order to do that, the company has created a very advanced console with the latest technologies.
Now, if you don’t mind a slow charge on your device, such as when you want to leave it charging overnight, you can use a phone charger. You will want to power down the Switch and then charge it.
However, for the best results, you should always check the cable and the adapter. Make sure that both of these are in prime condition before you put the device to charge.
Can You Charge A Nintendo Switch With A MacBook Charger?
The Nintendo switch uses a USB-C port to charge and this is also the same port used by the new line of MacBooks. Therefore, if you charge a MacBook using a power adapter, and then you use a USB-C to USB-C cable to connect the 2 devices, you can charge the switch!
This is something that was confirmed by polygon and a Quartz reporter was the first to report this on twitter! They noted that when you connect a powered-down Nintendo switch to a MacBook or MacBook Pro, the console will be charged!
Quartz also reported that a MacBook Pro can be charged by using a Nintendo switch as long as the console is active. To most people, this shouldn’t be too surprising!
However, what we find interesting is how a smaller system like that of the Nintendo switch can power a larger system like that of the MacBook Pro.
This is especially so when you consider the switch has a 4310 mAh and 3.7 V lithium-ion battery that consumes 39W of power while the MacBook Pro has a 54.5 Wh lithium-polymer battery that consumes up to 61W of power.
It’s therefore natural to assume that a MacBook Pro can be used to charge a Nintendo switch. But what we find interesting is how the Nintendo switch can also charge a MacBook Pro even when the console is off!
What’s the Recommended Option?
Charging your Nintendo Switch with a phone charger is not recommended. The company strictly recommends that you only use the charger provided with the console or purchase a replacement from Nintendo.
The Switch’s internal components are designed to charge on a considerably higher amperage than the output provided by most phones on the market as we have already discussed.
If you continue using the Switch even while it is connected to the charger, there is a chance that the battery will still continue to deplete, albeit at a slightly lower rate.
More importantly, you should never use a power bank with the Switch; anything that claims to have IQ charging capabilities or the Quick Charge power banks is strictly not advised because they will charge your device incredibly slowly.
Not only that, but there is also a little risk that your Switch might be bricked due to the power differences. The Switch interacts very differently with these technologies and you must never use it.
There are officially licensed power banks that are designed for charging the Switch so you should only buy one that is officially licensed by Nintendo.
If you want to prolong the battery life of your Switch and make sure that it lasts you a few years at the very least before you need a replacement, you should only follow the best practices as recommended by the company.
This means that you should only use the provided charger or get a replacement from Nintendo to keep your device powered up.