As reported by our friends at 9to5Google, tons of Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro owners are complaining that their phone won’t charge with some cables or power adapters. It seems that the Pixel 6 will simply ignore some charging accessories, even if these chargers work fine with other devices.
Cheap or incredibly slow charging accessories seem to be at the heart of this problem. But why won’t the Pixel 6 work with cheap chargers, and what do you need to reliably charge your new phone?
Why Won’t the Pixel 6 Work with Cheap Chargers?
Google hasn’t told us why the Pixel 6 is so choosy about its charging accessories, but we’ve seen a few theories floating around. Some outlets suggest that Google doesn’t want you to slowly charge your phone, as the slow charge could damage its battery.
But this simply isn’t the case. In fact, the opposite is usually true. Fast charging generates a lot of heat, which can hurt a battery and reduce its lifespan. Generally speaking, a slower charger will help preserve battery health, especially if you skip out on the Pixel’s battery saver features. (That’s why the Pixel 6 charges at relatively slow speeds compared to other flagship devices.)
Our best guess is that the Pixel 6 simply ignores any charging speeds that fall below USB 2.0 standards. Charging accessories that don’t fit these basic standards are often poorly made and could deliver an uneven stream of power to your device, which may hurt the battery.
That said, we don’t really know why the Pixel 6 is so picky about charging accessories. Google explicitly states in its support page that some charging accessories “might not work” with the Pixel 6, so this is probably an intentional decision from the company. (Still, I wouldn’t be surprised if it’s an unintentional bug, like the wonky fingerprint reader, the missing Google Assistant features, or the screen flickering.)
Which Charging Accessories Should You Use?
Google suggests charging your Pixel 6 with, at minimum, a USB-C cable with a USB 2.0 power adapter (the thing that goes in the wall). These are fairly low standards, so you shouldn’t need to buy a bunch of new crap.
Take the USB-C PD charging cable that came with your Pixel 6 and try using it with every power adapter you own. If your power adapters only have old-fashioned USB-A ports, try to find a USB-C to USB-A cable—you may have one tucked in your desk or closet. (Earbuds, phones, and power banks often come with a USB-C to USB-A cable.)
If you’re still having trouble, then it’s probably time to buy some new charging accessories. I suggest ordering a USB-C PD power brick and using it with your Pixel 6’s official charging cable. If you lost this cable, there are plenty of third-party options that work just as well.
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