MagSafe Overview Updated April 5, 2021

MagSafe

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118 'MagSafe' stories

July 2011 - September 2021

MagSafe

MagSafe was originally a method used to attach charging cables to MacBooks, the branding was subsequently re-used by Apple for the magnetically-attached wireless charging system introduced with the iPhone 12.

MagSafe (Mac)

MagSafe was originally Apple’s branding for its own-design method of attaching power cables to MacBooks. It was first introduced with the MacBook Pro in 2006. The design was revised in 2012 to suit thinner laptops, and known as MagSafe 2. An adapter was available to allow newer chargers to work with older Macs.

The idea was two-fold. First, attaching a cable was really easy as you just held it somewhere near the port and it would automatically snap into place.

Second, if someone accidentally walked into the power cable, it would pull free from the MacBook, avoiding accidents where the MacBook would be sent flying off a table onto the ground.

MagSafe became a hugely popular feature of MacBooks, and there was some dismay when Apple abandoned it as part of a redesign which saw a switch to USB-C ports for power. However, it was subsequently found that USB-C cables also pull out if someone catches a cable, and most users now appreciate the ability to charge from either side, as well as from a wide range of power banks.

MagSafe (iPhone)

Apple re-used the term to describe the wireless charging system introduced with the iPhone 12. A ring-shaped pattern of magnets in the iPhone is used to automatically align the phone with a charging pad for optimum efficiency.

The underlying charging system is just Qi, so MagSafe chargers are effectively Qi ones with a ring of magnets, but they also have a chip designed to allow the phone to recognize the charger and allow 15w charging.

Apple’s own MagSafe charger looks and acts like a larger version of the charging puck for the Apple Watch. The magnets are also strong enough to allow MagSafe charging stands where the iPhone ‘floats’ in the air.

A secondary use of MagSafe is to allow accessories to be magnetically attached to the iPhone and/or a compatible case. Apple and other companies offer MagSafe wallets, for example, while third-party brands also offer things like snap-on power banks.

Be careful when buying MagSafe chargers

Care is required when buying MagSafe chargers and power banks, as some ordinary Qi chargers with magnets will describe themselves as ‘MagSafe compatible,’ but do not support the faster charging speed. Always check they state that they offer 15w charging with an iPhone.

Photo by Brandon Romanchuk on Unsplash

MagSafe Stories September 14

During the “California Streaming” event, Apple announced new cases and accessories for the iPhone 13. Alongside it, the company unveiled a new MagSafe Wallet that now integrates with the Find My app and network.

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To complement the iPhone 13 family, Apple has introduced all-new MagSafe cases in fresh Fall colors. The new versions of the silicone and leather cases predictably have updated camera cutouts as well. This means that there are now separate cases for the iPhone 13 and the iPhone 13 Pro, rather than a single interchangeable one.

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MagSafe Stories September 9

We’ve seen a lot of MagSafe stands arrive over the course of the last year and OtterBox has thrown its hat in the ring with the Folding Stand for MagSafe. While there’s only so much room to innovate with an iPhone stand, OtterBox brings great flexibility which means you can adjust to the exact angle you want in a portable package for iPhone 12 and beyond.

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MagSafe Stories September 6

We’re only a week away from Apple’s rumored September special event at which the company is expected to introduce the so-called “iPhone 13.” Now a new FCC filing from Apple has revealed a revised version of the MagSafe Charger, which may indicate an update to the company’s MagSafe lineup of accessories coming along with the new iPhone.

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MagSafe Stories August 31

Nomad has launched an improved version of its leather and aluminum Base Station Mini today by bringing MagSafe compatibility to the sleek wireless charger. Read on for a closer look at what you’re getting with the upgraded Base Station Mini for iPhone 12 users.

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JOBY introduces new MagSafe-compatible accessories for the iPhone 12 lineup to help content creators

MagSafe has turned out to be one of the most popular features for the iPhone 12 lineup. Accessories makers are presently coming out with new products on a weekly basis. JOBY is introducing the all-new GripTight system for MagSafe that’s aimed to give content creators the opportunity to use iPhone 12 without needing another complicated locking system.

MagSafe Stories August 19

Alongside the iPhone 12 last year, Apple unveiled its new MagSafe wireless charging technology. The MagSafe ecosystem has grown to consist of a variety of accessories, including the MagSafe Duo two-in-one charger with one MagSafe puck and an Apple Watch charging puck.

When unveiled, the MagSafe Duo was mocked by many as a less-ambitious version of Apple’s failed AirPower all-in-one charger. Since it was released in December, however, the MagSafe Duo has turned into a go-to accessory for me.

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MagSafe Stories August 15

I’ve made it clear in previous posts that I love MagSafe. After not initially thinking I would care much for it, I now use it exclusively to charge my iPhone 12 Mini. Since discovering that Apple’s MagSafe charger can also charge my AirPods Pro (thanks ATP!), I rarely use Lightning. Of course, charging in the car is a big part of an iPhone user’s life, so getting a compatible MagSafe in the car is a must-have. Since the iPhone 12 line was released, I’ve been the ESR HaloLock in the car, but I recently switched over to the Anker PowerWave, and it’s the best option to charge via MagSafe in the Car.

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MagSafe Stories July 27

Zens unveils new MagSafe 4-in-1 wireless charger for iPhone 12, Apple Watch, and AirPods

Zens has launched a new multi-device MagSafe charger today with a minimalist design. The 4-in-1 Magnetic Wireless Charger offers a floating iPhone 12 mount with full 15W MagSafe charging, an integrated Apple Watch charger, and more.

MagSafe Stories July 25

A few weeks ago, I wrote an article where I called MagSafe the defining feature of the iPhone 12 line. Little did I know that Apple was about to release its own official MagSafe battery pack. So, of course, I bought it immediately because I wanted to see how it compared in day-to-day use with the Anker Magnetic Battery Pack. Let’s dive into my comparison of the Apple MagSafe Battery vs. Anker Magnetic Battery Pack.

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MagSafe Stories July 22

Apple’s MagSafe Battery Pack hit stores earlier this week as an official Apple alternative for users who need a power bank to extend iPhone’s battery life. Now a teardown video has revealed more details about the new accessory, such as its internal design with a two-cell battery and more.

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MagSafe Stories July 20

When Apple first unveiled the iPhone 12 and MagSafe back in October, it immediately hit me that the perfect use case was for battery packs. Finally, nine months later, an official Apple MagSafe battery pack is here. We’ve got our hands on one and have plenty of thoughts to share.

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MagSafe Stories July 19

Apple’s iPhone 12 MagSafe Battery Pack is set to start arriving to customers later this week after being announced last Tuesday, but one lucky buyer has managed to get their hands on one early. Images posted to Reddit offer our first real-world at the MagSafe Battery Pack for iPhone 12, with details on fit, finish, and thickness.

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MagSafe Stories July 15

Mophie is further expanding its multi-device charging lineup today with a new 3-in-1 Wireless Stand for MagSafe Charger. This new Mophie charger features a built-in Apple Watch charging puck, a charging spot for your AirPods, and a spot to place your own MagSafe charger as well.

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MagSafe Stories July 14

Apple’s MagSafe Battery Pack is here with a clean design and seamless integration with iPhone 12 and iOS. But is it worth the $99 price tag? Follow along for a detailed comparison of the Apple MagSafe Battery vs. Mophie and Anker’s solid alternatives at half the price.

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MagSafe Stories July 13

Apple unexpectedly introduced on Tuesday a new MagSafe Battery Pack, which is basically an official power bank for the iPhone 12 lineup. The accessory, which is now available to order from Apple’s online store, seems to confirm a long-standing rumor about iPhone 12 being capable of reverse wireless charging.

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While a lot of MagSafe stands include metal for at least some part of their build, there’s usually a good amount of plastic involved. Native Union’s MagSafe Rise Dock takes the path less traveled with a solid metal build and a minimalistic (and portable) design. Read along for our detailed review of the MagSafe Rise Dock, Native Union’s 10-foot MagSafe compatible charger, and more.

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In a surprise launch, Apple debuted its MagSafe Battery Pack for the iPhone 12 lineup with a clean white design. Let’s dive into all the details on the new accessory like the capacity and how much charge it might offer, charging speed, simultaneous and reverse charging, what’s in the box, and more.

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MagSafe Stories July 10

In recent years, there have been two “takes” I’ve made on a quick judgment. They were that the AirPods wouldn’t be a product hit and that MagSafe was a solution in search of a problem. I couldn’t have been more wrong on both of them. AirPods have gone to become a massive hit, and MagSafe has become the key feature that I think we will remember from the iPhone 12 release cycle. Let’s dive into what has made MagSafe the future of charging for Apple devices.

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MagSafe Stories June 29

Mophie is out with its sharp MagSafe compatible accessory lineup for iPhone 12. But it went above and beyond by making Snap Adapters to bring the MagSafe functionality to all iPhones (and even Android smartphones). Here’s our full review of the Snap and Snap+ Mophie MagSafe accessories.

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MagSafe Stories June 14

Apple has added a few new iPhone 12 silicone cases to the online store. The new colors include sunflower, cloud blue, and electric orange. All three colors are available for each of the four iPhone 12 models. They are priced at the same $49 and are available for delivery starting this Wednesday.

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MagSafe Stories June 8

Mophie is out today with its innovation around the MagSafe ecosystem. While it of course works with the iPhone 12 lineup that officially includes MagSafe, the company has also launched a solution to bring the functionality to any iPhone. The Mophie Snap MagSafe lineup includes six sharp new products.

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MagSafe Stories May 27

Nimble launches MagSafe compatible dual wireless charger with eco-friendly design

Nimble – the accessory maker with an eco-friendly focus – is out today with a new line of wireless chargers. The Apollo Series is made from recycled plastic and silicone, features MagSafe compatibility for iPhone 12, and comes in a single or dual charger option.

MagSafe Stories May 25

Native Union has released what looks like a sharp new MagSafe charging option with the Rise Dock. Featuring a minimalist, metal design, it works with Apple’s official MagSafe charger to offer 15W charging, easy one-handed detachment for iPhone 12, and more.

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