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Home / Technology / Apple can bring MagSafe back to MacBooks. Here’s why it’s a terrible idea

Apple can bring MagSafe back to MacBooks. Here’s why it’s a terrible idea



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Sarah Tew / CNET

Digging through Mac rumors can be an ungrateful task. They tend to be filled with as much inactive speculation and expected fulfillment of fulfillment as real information. But some Mac leaks and rumors are worth noting. Last week, just like CES 2021

was packaged, claimed both Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman and analyst Ming-Chi Kuo New MacBook Pro laptops arrived in 2021.


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Why Apple should not bring MagSafe back to MacBooks


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The idea of ​​new 14- and 16-inch models with Apple’s M1 arm-based chips should not shock anyone, nor that Apple’s Touch Bar secondary screen may be on its way out.

But much more significant, at least for longtime Mac followers, is the rumor of the return of the MagSafe connector – a proprietary magnetic power outlet that was part of the MacBook line. from its launch in 2006.

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If the MagSafe cable pulled out, it securely pulled away from the rest of the laptop.

Sarah Tew / CNET

MagSafe’s phasing out began with late, sorry 12-inch MacBook in 2015, where it was replaced with a USB-C power connection, but a handful of older models stuck until recently. We have complained about the loss and tried to get up with solutions
to Replace it.

Then Apple started using the MagSafe name again in 2020 for a series of magnetic charging accessories, but there are few similarities beyond the name.

The classic MagSafe was a brilliant design that safely pulled loose when you stumbled across it. It probably kept every MacBook safe from at least a few tumbles off the table. But there were also problems. Because they were so proprietary, losing an old MacBook power stone (or almost any portable power supply before the USB-C era) meant hunting for a replacement, and your options were usually an expensive official model or an often unreliable knockoff.

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The first USB-C-powered MacBook, from 2015.

Sarah Tew / CNET

Modern MacBooks use all USB-C ports for charging, which does not allow the cable to come loose safely (at least not by design). But they have an undeniable advantage over MagSafe: No matter what modern, regular laptop I have – a Dell XPS 13, HP Specter, Acer Swift, Lenovo ThinkPad, Asus ZenBook, etc. – there’s a good chance it’s USB-C power cable will work with MacBook, and vice versa.

Apple’s chargers for laptops are 30W, 61W and 96W. Most laptop chargers 45W, or 60W, and I have mixed and matched with abandoned in recent years. Try hard enough, and you may eventually find an edge case where charger A does not work with laptop B, but other than devices such as game laptops (such as recently started supporting USB-C charging), you rarely get a problem.

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MagSafe and modernized MagSafe 2 connectors.

James Martin / CNET

For me, this means that I end a year working primarily at home, and do not have to worry about which power supply for laptop was in which room. It has honestly been liberating.

The iPad Pro and Air have USB-C charging now, as does everything from the Nintendo Switch to the Oculus Quest. Having it in MacBooks has always been a surprisingly non-proprietary move, and perhaps one that was too good to last.

If Apple can figure out a way to bring MagSafe back without losing the power port’s standard USB-C connection, then I’m all for it. If it means going back to proprietary bricks, MagSafe should probably stay dead.


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