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Dealing with Charging Issues

To get full use out of the iPad and iPhone, the users will need to keep the device's battery charged. They can do this by using either the USB Power Adapter or a USB port that provides a sufficient level of power.

Connecting the iPad or iPhone to the computer via USB is often more convenient, because you can synchronize the device and charge it on the same cable without having to reconnect. But for the iPad, the USB Power Adapter is a better bet for three reasons:

  • First, the iPad doesn't charge from a USB connection while its screen is turned on. By contrast, the iPhone does.
  • Second, the iPad simply doesn't charge from many USB connections because they don't deliver enough power.
  • Third, the iPad charges faster from the USB Power Adapter than from a suitable USB port.

To get the iPad to charge from a USB port, you'll almost always need to connect it directly to a port on the computer rather than one on a USB hub or on a keyboard. Check that the iPad shows the charging symbol in the upper-right corner of the screen; if the Not Charging readout appears instead, you'll know that the port lacks the oomph to charge the iPad.

Dealing with the "Charging Is Not Supported With This Accessory"

Once in a while, you may run into the message "Charging is not supported with this accessory" when you plug in the Dock Connector.

This seems to be a puzzler, but it usually just means that someone has dug out a FireWire charger cable or FireWire Power Adapter from the days when iPods used FireWire. The Dock Connector on the FireWire charger cable is the same as the one on the older USB cable for the iPhone, so the problem may not be obvious until you find a FireWire port or a FireWire Power Adapter at the other end of the cable. (The Dock Connector on the USB cable that comes with the iPad and iPhone 4 is shallower from top to bottom than the Dock Connector on older cables, and has no release buttons.)

To deal with this problem, confiscate the FireWire cable or Power Adapter and give the user a USB cable and Power Adapter instead.

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