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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I'm wondering if anyone has had an opportunity to measure the power (or amperage) output of the USB ports in either the LT or Premier trims. This is easy with free battery charging apps on either iOS or Android.

My Spark EV USB port puts out 2.5W (5Vx0.5A) which is not convenient for charging, so I use a dual 12W (2.4A) adapter in the 12V port.

I would expect at least one port in front, and certainly the two in back in the Premier trim, to put out at least 10W (2A). I think you'd need a big phone or better yet a tablet to verify the max charging power from these ports.
 

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I'm wondering if anyone has had an opportunity to measure the power (or amperage) output of the USB ports in either the LT or Premier trims. This is easy with free battery charging apps on either iOS or Android.

My Spark EV USB port puts out 2.5W (5Vx0.5A) which is not convenient for charging, so I use a dual 12W (2.4A) adapter in the 12V port.

I would expect at least one port in front, and certainly the two in back in the Premier trim, to put out at least 10W (2A). I think you'd need a big phone or better yet a tablet to verify the max charging power from these ports.
For about $10 or $15, you can get a USB power meter off of Amazon and measure the current draw of any USB based device. I use this one: https://www.amazon.com/PortaPow-Monitor-Version-Multimeter-Chargers/dp/B00NTU18KY/ref=pd_sim_328_1?_encoding=UTF8&psc=1&refRID=2P12GFWNSQ4DFRHA4CCH

It's not too surprising that your Spark EV USB port only puts out 2.5W of power, since that's what the max draw that a USB device was allowed to draw on a data port when the USB standard was originally defined. The standard has been modified a few times since the original USB spec came out nearly 20 years ago. The USB port in our 2016 Highlander apparently was updated to allow a whole 5W of power, but certainly not 10W.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
For reference, the two USB ports in front of the armrest in the LT each put out 1.5A (7.5W @ 5V).
 

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Yep, a Nexus 6p plugged in and google maps will still slowly drain.

I had to use a usb-c in the cig lighter and it fast charges now.

I think any USB power plug should be at least 2A.
 

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For reference, the two USB ports in front of the armrest in the LT each put out 1.5A (7.5W @ 5V).
When I measured output last month, both ports, and the two ports in the rear, could put out 2A. If you are only seeing 1.5A, then one of two things is going on: 1) your USB cable is bad, or 2) the device's battery is nearly full and is tapering the charge. I used both a nearly discharged USB battery bank, and a nearly discharged iPad to test.
 

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Yep, a Nexus 6p plugged in and google maps will still slowly drain.

I had to use a usb-c in the cig lighter and it fast charges now.

I think any USB power plug should be at least 2A.
Both ports (and the two in the rear) will put out 2A. Check your USB cable, it might be bad.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
When I measured output last month, both ports, and the two ports in the rear, could put out 2A. If you are only seeing 1.5A, then one of two things is going on: 1) your USB cable is bad, or 2) the device's battery is nearly full and is tapering the charge. I used both a nearly discharged USB battery bank, and a nearly discharged iPad to test.
Nope. devbolt, you're talking about the Premier, which has a different USB port configuration than the LT. The LT only has 2 ports, located just ahead of the armrest. I verified again this morning that they can only put out 1.5A. (And yes I tried it with my phone at various SOC, plus my cable and phone demonstrated 2.4A through a 12V USB adapter.)

What I didn't realize until this morning is that when Apple CarPlay is enabled, my iPhone would only recharge at 1.0A. I don't know if the same happens with Android Auto. So to get the fastest recharge from the built-in USB ports in an LT, don't enable CarPlay.

I'm curious to hear if the Premier ports are also current limited when CarPlay is used.

For reference, this is the only free app on iOS that I know of that shows charge current: https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/battery-life-check-devices-runtimes/id1080930585
 

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Nope. devbolt, you're talking about the Premier, which has a different USB port configuration than the LT. The LT only has 2 ports, located just ahead of the armrest. I verified again this morning that they can only put out 1.5A. (And yes I tried it with my phone at various SOC, plus my cable and phone demonstrated 2.4A through a 12V USB adapter.)

What I didn't realize until this morning is that when Apple CarPlay is enabled, my iPhone would only recharge at 1.0A. I don't know if the same happens with Android Auto. So to get the fastest recharge from the built-in USB ports in an LT, don't enable CarPlay.

I'm curious to hear if the Premier ports are also current limited when CarPlay is used.

For reference, this is the only free app on iOS that I know of that shows charge current: https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/battery-life-check-devices-runtimes/id1080930585
It's true I have a Premier, but the front USB ports should be the same regardless of trim level, since they're standard on both trims.

That app is great! Thanks for the tip. When I plug in my iPhone to it, it shows the capability of the charger I'm plugged into, but doesn't necessarily show how much it currently is drawing. Should I be looking at a different screen? I'm on the Raw Data screen.

Regular iPhones will only ever charge at a max of 1A regardless of whether the USB port can provide. Or at least as far as I know. I have an iPhone 6S and it only pulls 1A, no matter what I use (wall wart, multi-port intelligent charger that does up to 2.4A, Bolt USB ports, multi USB port car charger, etc). I don't know if the iPhone 6+/6S+/7+ will draw more.

What's weird is that when using that app, it shows the Bolt's front USB port as advertising 1.5A capability with CarPlay disabled, and 1A with CarPlay enabled.

And I swear that in the past I saw 2A being drawn from the front USB ports with my iPad completely discharged and a large discharged USB battery bank. But when I went to double-check things after you posted, sure enough, the iPad at less than 40% was only pulling 1.5A, but the rear ports showed it was pulling 2A. Color me confused. Same known good working cable.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
When I plug in my iPhone to it, it shows the capability of the charger I'm plugged into, but doesn't necessarily show how much it currently is drawing. Should I be looking at a different screen? I'm on the Raw Data screen.
You're correct, it doesn't show actual current, just max charger amperage.
Regular iPhones will only ever charge at a max of 1A regardless of whether the USB port can provide. Or at least as far as I know. I have an iPhone 6S and it only pulls 1A, no matter what I use (wall wart, multi-port intelligent charger that does up to 2.4A, Bolt USB ports, multi USB port car charger, etc). I don't know if the iPhone 6+/6S+/7+ will draw more.
As far as I understand all recent iPhones (6 and beyond) can charge at 2.4A. That's certainly the case with my 6+ and my wife's 7. Not sure why yours would be limited to 1A.

Using my son's Android, it appears the amperage operates the same way with Android Auto as it does with Apple CarPlay: 1A when using Auto, 1.5A when Auto is turned off.
 

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All of the iPhones I've owned in the last 7 years have charged at roughly 1A (3GS, 4S, 5S and now 6S). I've seen references that the 7+ can charge at 2A. I don't know if the 6+ can charge at 2A, I haven't been able to find anything online that indicates it can. All indications are that the regular 7 charges at 1A.

I test all my cables and chargers to make sure they actually perform like they claim. I've ended up weeding out quite a few crappy chargers and cables.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
All iPhones after the 6/6+ (except SE) can charge at 2.1A.
 

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All of the iPhones I've owned in the last 7 years have charged at roughly 1A (3GS, 4S, 5S and now 6S). I've seen references that the 7+ can charge at 2A. I don't know if the 6+ can charge at 2A, I haven't been able to find anything online that indicates it can. All indications are that the regular 7 charges at 1A.

I test all my cables and chargers to make sure they actually perform like they claim. I've ended up weeding out quite a few crappy chargers and cables.
My Nexus 6p wants 3A at 5V, I have to use the 12V Adapter to keep the phone charged if navigating with it.
 

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All iPhones after the 6/6+ (except SE) can charge at 2.1A.
I have a 6S. I've never seen it pull more than 1A, ever, even with a iPad charger. The Battery Life app shows that the charger I'm plugged into is capable of 2.4A, but the phone never pulls more than 1A according to the USB power meter I'm using. I'm using known good cables that will charge my iPad at 2.1A, so I know it's not a cable issue.
 

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I have a 6S. I've never seen it pull more than 1A, ever, even with a iPad charger. The Battery Life app shows that the charger I'm plugged into is capable of 2.4A, but the phone never pulls more than 1A according to the USB power meter I'm using. I'm using known good cables that will charge my iPad at 2.1A, so I know it's not a cable issue.
Well, I'll be the first to admit when I'm wrong, and I'm wrong. I went out to experiment more, and with CarPlay disabled, I saw my iPhone charging at 1.32A:




And here it is with CarPlay enabled:



I was able to get ~2A out of the front USB ports to charge a depleted USB battery bank:



Which is comparable to what a cigarette lighter adapter could put out:

 

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Discussion Starter #15
Great info--thanks for the update and awesome pictures!

I wonder if your phone could have pulled more than 1.3A if it had a lower SOC. Also, have you checked your phone (with lower SOC) charging from the 12V adapter or the backseat USB ports?
 

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Great info--thanks for the update and awesome pictures!

I wonder if your phone could have pulled more than 1.3A if it had a lower SOC. Also, have you checked your phone (with lower SOC) charging from the 12V adapter or the backseat USB ports?
Back seat ports will do the full 2A into the discharged battery bank, or a discharged iPad.

I'll double check my iPhone tomorrow to see if it pulls more at a lower SOC.
 
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Back seat ports will do the full 2A into the discharged battery bank, or a discharged iPad.

I'll double check my iPhone tomorrow to see if it pulls more at a lower SOC.
Okay, with my iPhone 6S at ~40% SOC, it pulled up to 1.77A from the rear ports:



And from the front ports with CarPlay disabled, the iPhone managed to pull between 1.39A and 1.57A



And the iPad at 34% SOC from the front ports it was a steady 1.45A:
 

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Discussion Starter #18
This is hard to summarize. It looks like:

Premier, front: 1.5A phones, 1.0A phones using CarPlay/Android Auto, 2.1A other
Premier, back: 2.1A

LT, front: 1.5A phones, 1.0A phones using CarPlay/Android Auto, 2.1A other (possibly)
 

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Is there a USB port which is live all the time in the LT? I can't find a way to charge my LG Stylo 3 Plus smartphone without turning on my Bolt. I am concerned that by doing that I am using more power than I need to. Thank you.
 

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Is there a USB port which is live all the time in the LT? I can't find a way to charge my LG Stylo 3 Plus smartphone without turning on my Bolt. I am concerned that by doing that I am using more power than I need to. Thank you.
No.

What about buying a USB power bank and leaving it plugged into the Bolt's USB port? It will charge up whenever the car is turned on, and you can plug your phone into it to charge at any time without any risk of running down the Bolt's relatively small 12V auxiliary battery.
 
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