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RIM Confirms BlackBerry PlayBook Premium Charger Charges Phones 2X Faster!

IMG-20110422-00014 Capture on 04-22-2011 11-53-57

There has been a bit of confusion about using the BlackBerry PlayBook Premium charger and charging BlackBerry smartphones. Kevin @CrackBerry speculated a few months back that the Premium Charger that ships with the Playbook charges phones faster but RIM was mum on the subject and we speculated on our own. Now RIM has confirmed on their Shop BlackBerry store that:

It’s (BlackBerry Premium Charger) designed to work with your BlackBerry® smartphone—charging twice as fast as standard BlackBerry chargers.

From what I have been able to tell by using the BlackBerry Engineering Screen the PlayBook Premium charger pumps ~1250mAh charge into my BlackBerry Bold 9930 and BlackBerry Torch 9800. That is compared to 750mAh from the new standard BlackBerry Charger Plug that RIM ships with new phones. It is also higher than the 700mAh that the older model Folding Blade Travel Charger pushed out. The PlayBook Premium Charger on the other hand seems to be able to push 1800mAh though from what I can tell my phone is only reporting 1250mAh so it could be the numbers are a little less than two times the regular charger.

Still its nice to see RIM come out and confirm that the PlayBook Premium Charger is “designed to work with your BlackBerry smartphone” instead of just happening to work. This means that RIM has probably tested it with the smartphone capacitors to make sure you are not frying the charging circuitry.

PS: I am still trying to figure out what the story is with the BlackBerry PlayBook Rapid Charger. For a rapid charger it seems to only be pushing out 2000mAh which is not much higher than the Premium chargers 1800mAh. I am not an electrical engineer by any count but let us know if you figure it out!

8 total comments on this postSubmit your comment!
  1. Yeah and that doesn’t work the other way around….
    So, if I’m traveling and I can only afford to take one charger, it would be the playbook’s then.
    Was anyone able to charge the playbook through a computer??
    I used to but not anymore now :-(

  2. One thing I’m not clear on – is it “bad” for the device battery to charge it at a higher rate than the stock 750mA charger? Or does it really make no difference, because of the software that monitors/controls the charging?

    • My guess would be theres no difference up to a certain mA, at which point it’s just too much and frys stuff.

      But if it’s somthing that’s controlling the amperage you wouldn’t actually be getting the full 1800mA anyways.

      Who knows

      I think I’ll stick to coding, I don’t like getting shocked.

  3. I’ve been using my playbook charger to charge my HS-700 BT headset, from completely dead it took 20-30 mins. Not sure how much faster that is. The headset may have a max amp cutoff.

    As for the rapid charger vs regular playbook charger. Someone can correct me if I’m wrong since I’m no EE either, but from what I’ve read it seems safe to use basic math. So that 1800mA vs. 2000mA is an 11% upgrade so if a PlayBook takes 2hours to charge with the regular charger it will take ~1hour 47mins a savings of 13mins.

    The wall charger I just looked at is 750mA which would mean the Playbook charger will charge in less than half the time. Which seems about right from my experience.

    Not sure the Rapid charger is worth it to save 13mins on a playbook but to charge a phone in less than half the time it definitely is.

    FTR I’m pretty sure you just use mA for chargers ronen. mAh is the constant amps a battery can supply for an hour ie. 1800mAh would supply 1.8 amps for an hour before drained. Chargers don’t run out as long as they’re plugged in.

  4. I smell a burnt battery.

  5. I’ve posted about the rapid charger in numerous places, but here I’ll go again.

    The basic numbers are correct… the rapid charger turns a 3.5h (nominal) PlayBook charging time into about 3.2h, *if you’re not using it*. The big difference is when you want to charge while the PlayBook screen and backlight are on (i.e. you’re actually using it). In that case, the regular charger can’t keep up, and the power to the battery drops. With the rapid charger, it can supply both the PlayBook *and* the battery at the full charge rate. Under these conditions, the rapid charger does manage to “charge twice as fast”.

    For anyone who charges while using the tablet, the rapid charger is well worth the money. Otherwise, not so much.

  6. Folks you can plug a light bulb into a 3 million amp 110V circuit and it won’t blow up. You do it every day when you switch on a lightbulb. You notice no difference what so ever if its one lightbulb/toaster/TV on a 15Amp circuit or 9. As long as you don’t have more devices on the circuit than it can handle, each device takes ONLY what it needs. Same with the BlackBerry/PlayBook. It takes what it needs and no more. The sophisticated charging circuits of our BlackBerrys and PlayBooks ensure they don’t over charge and the rate is no more than the battery can handle.

    Electricity isn’t tough if you think of it in practical terms. Current (amperage) is like water flow. Think of it as how many gallons a minute are flowing into the device (consumption). Voltage (volts) is like water pressure. The more pressure you have, the more flow you can get through a hose (wire) or past a restriction (valve, thumb on end of hose, etc).

    These battery chargers all provide a constant voltage of 5 volts DC (direct current). The amount of current they send is dependant upon the amount drawn from the device – and the capacity of the charger of course. Think of this as a pressure regulator valve connected to your city water supply. It supplies the water to your house at a constant 40 PSI despite the fact that the city water pressure is higher. You won’t get more than a certain flow into your house at that pressure and hooking up a device doesn’t mean that device is going to take the full capacity of your plumbing system… it’ll take what it was designed for and not a drop more (unless of course you pump up the water pressure/voltage. That’s why you can’t hook up a device thats designed for North American 110V power in Europe 220/240V. You’d be pushing more than twice as much capacity into it and will burn it out.

  7. Anyone have a model / part number for this BlackBerry PlayBook Premium charger ?

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