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Comment: After nearly a year of use, MagSafe is the defining feature of the iPhone 12

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.

Table of contents

It solves a problem

Before MagSafe, I tried to get into wireless charging with Qi, but it seemed way more trouble than it was worth. I’d frequently wake up in the morning to find that my iPhone had not charged if I knocked my nightstand with my pillow. With MagSafe, once it’s connected, it’s connected.

Lightning has served us well, but the port needs to go. I dream of a world where the iPhone is as waterproof as the Apple Watch, and I believe we can get there once the port is gone and MagSafe is the only option.

MagSafe is a very Apple thing. It took something existing and made it tremendously better, just as they did with the MP3 player, tablets, smartwatches, and smartphones.

It created new options for accessories

Since I’ve gone all-in on MagSafe as the only way I charge my iPhone, I’ve been upgrading all my accessories to MagSafe. Here are some of my favorite ones:

Snap-on batteries

I currently have two MagSafe batteries. I use the ChargeFast battery and the Anker MagSafe battery. I love using these when traveling because I don’t have to worry about keeping a cable to charge. When I went to Disney World a few months ago, I kept both of these in my bag to make sure I had a full battery throughout the day. Since I use the iPhone 12 mini, I could fit it and an external battery in my pocket.

Desk docks

MagSafe is the perfect technology for the desk as well. I’ve been using a great dock from Anker that keeps my iPhone propped up during the day, so it’s perfect for using the Okta iPhone app to authenticate to various web services at my job. The dock also has a spot to drop my AirPods on them to keep them charged as well. It’s minimal and gets the job done. I love how easy it is to pop on and pop right back off. I don’t have to worry about clipping anything or plugging up a cable.

Car docks

I’ve also loved having MagSafe in the car. As with my desk, it’s easy to pop on when I get in the car to get a charge, but then quickly grab it when I arrive at my destination. I currently use a MagSafe compatible Air Vent mount from ESR. It has USB-C on one side and USB-A on the other so you can charge while driving.

What’s next for MagSafe?

I’d love for Apple to build out technology that lets data transfer over MagSafe so when it’s used in the car, you could connect to a wired CarPlay option. I often use the Camo app when I want a better webcam on my Mac, so I would prefer to still use Magsafe while it’s plugged up to my Mac.

I hope to see MagSafe integrated into airplanes, hotels, and coffee shops in the future. I wasn’t sold on it when Apple announced it, but it’s become the only way I charge my iPhone over the past year.

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