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2020. Boy, was it a year. A year of uncertainty. A year of social distancing and masking up. A year of the Tiger King. But it was also the year that Apple introduced MagSafe in their iPhone devices. At least something good came out of the year we all wish we could forget.
Phone cases dressed up like Tiger King cast members

So what the heck is MagSafe and why should we care?

Let us take you all the way back to 2006. We were first introduced to the MagSafe name as a feature of the MacBook Pro charging cable.
Original MacBook Pro MagSafe charging cable
It’s had a couple of different versions since then but the main idea was to save you from the sickening sound a laptop makes when you trip over its cord and send it spilling its innards all over the floor. Instead, the magnetic power connector would safely pop out of place and allow your fancy, foldable computer to live to see another day. (Now, about those cables fraying and becoming nearly useless after what felt like 2 months? That’s a story for another day.)
Man tripping over power cord


Fast forward to October 2020. Apple decided it was time to harness the power of magnets once again. But this time, they’d bake them right into the back of their iPhones in a ring pattern and changed wireless charging as we knew it.

Wireless charging coils in general were no new concept and had been around since the days when we were running around sporting Apple Bottom jeans and boots with the fur. And by 2017, over 200 types of smartphones incorporated this technology into their designs. But when the MagSafe coil launched in the iPhone 12 lineup, with it came a new wireless power transfer system that not only sped up charging times with up to 15W, but made perfect foolproof alignment a literal snap.



So by outfitting their coil with this magnetic ring, Apple solved the wireless charging pain point of your device not receiving a steady flow of that sweet energy if it happened to be sitting slightly off-center on the charger. With MagSafe, no more waking up to a low battery because your cat knocked your phone askew while you were sleeping.



Some Apple heads wish they’d been given the universal non-proprietary USB-C instead of MagSafe, but Apple loves to be that guy who’s a little different and little mysterious in his ways (and tbh…don’t we all kinda love ‘em for it?)


Let’s get down to the nitty gritty with

MagSafe FAQs

Does MagSafe charge faster?

MagSafe boasts up to 15W of charging power when plugged into a brick with the recommended 20W or higher. That’s a boost up from traditional wireless chargers that generally give you 7.5W of juice. That means it takes about an hour to charge from zero to 50%, which is about half the speed of your old faithful Lightning cable.
But be warned, Apple says that if the battery gets too hot at this higher wattage, it will automatically slow the charge to a trickle until it has the chance to chill. This is precisely why our MagSafe-compatible Charge Dinghy is optimized with temperature regulation to give you a slightly slower, but more reliable, flow of power

Will MagSafe still work if I use a phone case?

The answer is yes…and no. (Did that answer your question?)
MagSafe magnets do work through basic slim phone cases, but it’s definitely going to lessen their effect as the connection will not be as strong.
Lucky for you, special MagSafe-compatible cases are a thing. Phone cases like the Smartish Gripmunk and Gripzilla are made with their own ring of fire built right into the back to transfer that Apple ingenuity straight on through without roadblocks.


If you’re like many people who can’t live without the convenience of a two-in-one wallet phone case like our Wallet Slayer Vol. 1 and Vol. 2, you’ll want to pop it off before connecting it to any MagSafe charging puck. The added bulk of letting all your moola piggyback on your phone is a bit too thick to power through.


Will the magnets demagnetize my cards?

Speaking of moola, having your cards messed up is a legit concern. Nothing’s more anxiety-inducing than a credit card malfunction at checkout. Don’t sweat it. You won’t have to go through the “I swear I just deposited money yesterday!” rigmarole.
Apple’s special magnets don’t function like the alphabet magnets all over your fridge. You won’t find your phone clinging to the nearest hunk of metal, they’re designed to only be attracted to compatible accessories.
So what does this mean for your cards? Regular credit and debit cards contain High Coercivity (HiCo) strips, meaning they are stronger and hold their own against demagnetizing in general. MagSafe magnets do no harm against these. But Apple does warn you to beware of storing things that feature Low Coercivity (LoCo) strips directly against your MagSafe phone. These are often found in hotel keys, security badges, key fobs, or passports. In general it’s also a good practice to remove any cards, whether in a full wallet phone case or a MagSafe snap-on wallet before attaching a MagSafe-compatible charger.
Stack of credit cards

Ok…so MagSafe is safe for credit cards…what about my pacemaker?

Apple advises that users store all products containing the MagSafe ring a safe distance (at least 6 inches away) from any medical implants that act up around magnets.

What other tricks do these magic magnets have up their sleeves?

MagSafe isn’t just limited to charging purposes. It was designed with the intention of leveling up with the addition of other innovative accessories. Stuff like the Side Hustle removable wallet, which is slim enough to fit in your pocket and doesn’t need to be detached to access your stash inside. There are tripod mounts to help capture the latest TikTok dance without any camera wobble. Car mounts that hold your phone tight like a tree frog. Battery packs for when corded charging isn’t an option. Even MagSafe bluetooth speakers are a thing.

With Apple setting its sights on making MagSafe a data-transfer solution in the near future, it will be exciting to see what the world comes up with next to make those magnets something you can’t possibly live without.