New warnings from Apple indicate iPhone 12's MagSafe feature may not be its best idea

Cal Jeffrey

Posts: 2,631   +614
Staff member
Caveat emptor: Apple recently added a new document to its support pages regarding the use of the iPhone 12's MagSafe charger. It's pretty mundane and common sense, but Apple has added a few warnings at the end of the document that could be troubling for some users who want to use the feature.

Apple warns that the MagSafe can generate excess heat. As a failsafe, iOS will limit charging to 80 percent if the phone gets too warm (this works for any charger). It says that this will "extend the lifespan of your battery," but comes at the cost of longer charge times. Apple says you can avoid this by moving your phone to a cooler location if it gets too warm.

The support document also cautions that the MagSafe charger can damage the magnetic strip or RFID chip in your credit cards if they get caught between the iPhone and the charger. This foible is particularly concerning since Apple sells MagSafe wallets that attach to the back of the iPhone 12.

"If you keep your iPhone in a leather case while charging with your MagSafe Charger, the case might show circular imprints from the contact." —Apple Support

"If you have a case that holds any of these sensitive items, remove them before charging or make sure that they aren't between the back of your device and the charger," Apple advises customers.

Additionally, users should note that the charger may leave a circular ring on cases if they are left on while charging. Apple only cautions users with leather cases, but MacRumors reports that one of its readers posted pictures to the forum showing what the MagSafe did to his plastic case (above).

None of these things are particularly hazardous but can certainly be annoying for a phone that costs so much. Removing your case every time you have to juice up will quickly get old. In hindsight, perhaps the MagSafe feature was not the best idea for the iPhone 12. Maybe Apple should have stuck with the AirPower Qi charging dock after all.

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ColdSoup

Posts: 97   +193
Apple just added magnets to a Qi charger and markets it as something magical.

At least their card holders are RFID blocking so in theory credit cards should be fine in them if the metallic material in the holder offers proper shielding.
 
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Burty117

Posts: 3,890   +1,792
This MagSafe stuff seems pointless to me, if it forces the charger to be in a specific position, why not just plug it in normally? Even quicker charging and it's more efficient? And you won't have to take your case off everytime you want to charge your phone?

Am I missing something?
 

Farkinell

Posts: 53   +53
You can still use any Qi stuff without it, but this way you can use Qi charging and still pickup the phone, as well as allowing car mounts and other things to charge and hold the phone so much better. Doesn’t seem so bad to me
I know what else allows me to charge and pick up my phone, a cable. There are also many, many car mounts with build in Qi charging that grip the phone, very likely more securely than the reportedly weak magnets holding the 12.
 

QuantumPhysics

Posts: 3,720   +3,617
Excess heat and battery wear are the reasons I don't bother with induction charging. The back of my phone is ALWAYS HOT. It takes twice as long as my GaN charger.
 

Jpe1701

Posts: 26   +18
My fryer has a mag safe charger. It only works when it's plugged in though. It's a feature to prevent over heating. It'll be in the iphone 13. Lol.
 

tomkaten

Posts: 289   +239
Yeah, leave it to Apple to reinvent the wheel and call it their own. And sell a whole range of new crap around it, for mucho dinero. Proven strategy, when you have a horde of blind followers.
 

Fearghast

Posts: 289   +187
Doesn't it defeat the purpose of placing a phone on a charger and then picking it up? Like picking it up without having to disconnect the Qi charger with your other hand if you don't want the charger to smack the table on his way back!
Who's clever idea was that?!?

Typical half-baked "solution".
 

Shadowboxer

Posts: 978   +579
This just stinks of desperation to attack Apple for likes.

Unfortunately for the haters iPhones have left Android devices behind in the dust in so many areas. You know like device support, performance, cameras oh and the all important software support! But oh no your MagSafe charger might leave a ring on your case if you buy one of those devices! Lol
 

Savage1701

Posts: 154   +1
This MagSafe stuff seems pointless to me, if it forces the charger to be in a specific position, why not just plug it in normally? Even quicker charging and it's more efficient? And you won't have to take your case off everytime you want to charge your phone?

Am I missing something?
I think I read somewhere that Apple is rationalizing MagSafe because the Lightning port, over time, might wear out. Seems like a stretch to me, but the press sure has fawned over Apple on this magnet thing.
 

antiproduct

Posts: 161   +178
People: Apple, it's a pandemic, we all have to wear masks which breaks FaceID! How about a fingerprint reader?
Apple: Look, wireless charging and 5G! 5G! 5G! 5G!
Apple fans: HOLY CRAP, BEST PHONE EVER!
People: ...
Apple: Did I mention 5G?!
 
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Shadowboxer

Posts: 978   +579
As opposed to your posting, which stinks of desperation to defend Apple for some reason. Stockholm syndrome, perhaps?
It’s not “desperation to defend Apple” at all. If I were desperate to defend Apple ID casually remind you of all the ways Apple devices humiliate their competition.
But most people know that these days tbf..

I just love how front page new for the latest iPhone is that their new magnetic charger may leave a ring on your case is about all the news there is on their products. What’s next week? “If you don’t use a case the glass may scratch”. Lol
 
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It’s not “desperation to defend Apple” at all. If I were desperate to defend Apple ID casually remind you of all the ways Apple devices humiliate their competition.
But most people know that these days tbf..
Seems like "defending Apple" to me and that you're in denial. First you say, I'm not defending and then go into how your preferred corporate entity is totally the best and is humiliating the competition. Sorry to tell you, that's cultist mindset. Scientology cultists think Hubbard is a God too. I use various tech from all sorts of companies on a daily basis and I have no bias towards any company and honestly, I'm not particularly amazed by my Apple devices. What irks me is fanatical fans (from any side) like you that think your preferred company is the most amazing ever and can do no wrong. Let's talk about that humiliation.. were you humiliated when the IPhone was the bending? The butterfly keyboard and panic failures on the MacBooks? The antenna issues and being told by Apple you're holding it wrong? The throttling and learning that you could have fixed it with a cheap battery replacement instead of a new phone? The amazing 3d touch that was quietly dropped the next version and never talked about again?
 

mailpup

Posts: 7,613   +726
TS Special Forces
Continue to comment on the article but discontinue the personal comments please. Thank you.
 

gerjy5w

Posts: 35   +43
It really sucks that Apple has lost focus. Being different doesn't mean packing more unnecessary gimmicks into an already great product.
 
Try putting a thin foil between the Qi charger and any Qi phones, the foil will be heated up. The point is Qi charging is for convenience, but if it's messing up your wallet and its contents within, remove the wallet, cc or anything in between the Qi charger + Qi phones. Problem is solved. Apple and other phone manufacturers need a (engraving) Disclaimer sticker behind their phones: Qi charging might heat/mess up your contents between phone & charger . Remove contents before Qi charging. Period.
 
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