Ever since Apple got burned by the announced yet unreleased AirPower charging mat, the company has been cautious about talking about charging accessories still in production.
Perhaps that’s why we’re learning about a rumored MagSafe battery pack through the grapevine. Bloomberg reported that the company has been developing this charging pack for at least a year, with initial plans to launch it months after the iPhone 12’s October 2020 launch.
In some of the prototypes, it’s supposedly designed with a white rubber exterior. And it won’t be a complete case like past Apple battery packs, which is a first for the company. Instead, you stick it on when you need to charge your iPhone conveniently. It’s presumed to wirelessly charge the iPhone via Qi standard.
Apple has reportedly tested the accessory’s ability to stay attached to the iPhone, an issue some iPhone 12 users have reported with other MagSafe accessories like the leather MagSafe Wallet. It supposedly stays in place while in use.
The main issue Apple faces is with software. The iPhone’s software reportedly says the battery pack is overheating when it isn’t. There are also problems when users switch between using the iPhone with a case and without one.
These problems might be bad enough for Apple to delay or scrap its release, according to Bloomberg.
We were first tipped about the development of this battery pack in the iOS 14.5 beta 2 by MacRumors. It showed a new feature called Mobile Charge Mode that referenced an unspecified battery pack.
An Apple spokeswoman declined to comment on the report.
Bloomberg also reported that Apple discussed other MagSafe accessories internally, including an in-car attachment. But one of Mark Gurman’s sources claimed this product hadn’t entered formal development.
Apple also supposedly discussed reverse wireless charging internally. It initially planned to let the 2019 iPhone charge AirPods on the phone’s back, but the company canceled said plans.
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