Comment: Apple still needs an AirPower-like accessory despite having MagSafe Duo

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Apple discontinued AirPower even before the product had a chance to hit stores, and since then the company has been investing in its MagSafe lineup of accessories – which includes the MagSafe Duo Charger. Although I really like the MagSafe Duo Charger, Apple still needs an AirPower-like accessory.

AirPower was a really ambitious product. It promised to let users charge up to three Apple devices simultaneously – so you could charge your iPhone, Apple Watch, and AirPods at the same time. Another highlight of AirPower is that users wouldn’t need to place the device in a specific spot, as the accessory would have multiple coils to enable charging anywhere on its surface.

To reinforce the integration between Apple’s devices, the iPhone would show the battery level for all devices placed on the AirPower, and this was extensively advertised when the iPhone X was announced in 2017.

Unfortunately, although former Apple marketing VP Phil Schiller said the company “knows how to do this,” Apple never got around to launching AirPower. After more than a year of silence, the company confirmed to the press that AirPower wouldn’t meet the company’s “high standards,” so the project was canceled.

The MagSafe era

With the launch of the iPhone 12 in 2020, one of the key features of the new phones was MagSafe, which is what Apple calls a new arrangement of magnets on the phone’s back combined with NFC to enable new types of iPhone accessories.

While there are iPhone cases and even car mounts compatible with MagSafe, this technology shines with the MagSafe Charger. Apple itself offers two versions of the MagSafe Charger: a simple one that can recharge just one iPhone or AirPods, and the MagSafe Duo, which attempts to replace the AirPower as an accessory capable of recharging multiple devices at the same time.

I’ve been using the MagSafe Duo Charger for some time now and it can be quite useful for users who have an iPhone and an Apple Watch. It’s also perfect for traveling, since not only does it have the two chargers in one, but also because you can fold it up to put it in your backpack or pocket.

MagSafe Duo is not AirPower

Yes, MagSafe Duo can recharge an iPhone and an Apple Watch at the same time, but it’s far from being what AirPower was meant to be.

AirPower was about bringing more convenience and freedom to users, since you wouldn’t have to think about where to put the devices or even which devices to put in it. Apple demonstrated how it would be possible to charge your iPhone with another iPhone or AirPods and the Apple Watch at the same time using AirPower, and that’s something the MagSafe Duo simply cannot do.

The main scenario that makes me want an AirPower-like accessory is recharging iPhone and AirPods at the same time. I can place my iPhone and Apple Watch together on MagSafe Duo, but I still need another dedicated charger for AirPods. Sometimes a friend needs to charge their iPhone and I can’t share MagSafe Duo with them if I’m using it with my iPhone.

Apple might bring back AirPower

AirPower iPhone XS AirPods 2

A recent Bloomberg report said that Apple has not yet given up on launching a multi-device charger. Earlier this year, Mark Gurman said that the company is still working on a new accessory similar to AirPower, but it’s unclear whether the project is going well.

And of course, Apple doesn’t have to stop selling MagSafe Duo with a new multi-device charger coming. The MagSafe Duo is still super convenient and is probably better suited for some situations, and I would still use mine even if I had an AirPower.

What do you think? Do you also want an AirPower-like accessory or is MagSafe Duo more than enough? Let me know what you think in the comments section below.

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