Renowned Apple soothsayer Ming-Chi Kuo reckons the iGiant is bringing back its precious MagSafe charging standard with the next generation of MacBook Pro machines.
The revived version will appear on two new MacBook Pro models expected to arrive later this year: a 14- inch version codenamed J314, and a 16- inch design currently known as J316
Pointing out internal sources, Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman wrote that the next version of MagSafe will work similar to previous generations, with an extended rectangular style kept in location by a small halo of magnets.
This proprietary design will supposedly allow Apple to provide charging speeds beyond those provided by the 31 W USB-C adapters delivered.
Separately, Apple is stated to be pondering eliminating the Touch Bar from future makers. First introduced in 2016, this feature changed the function secrets with a thin strip of OLED touchscreen, which would reveal context-sensitive buttons based upon whatever app was being used. At finest, this was a white elephant, with third-party designer interest lukewarm.
At worst, it was unhelpful. The Touch Bar made accessing the function secrets feel clunkier and changed the physical Escape key on earlier models, leading to countless jokes about designers being forever trapped in Vim.
Apple gains from history
Introduced in 2006 with the inaugural MacBook Pro, MagSafe utilized a gentle magnetic force to hold the power adaptor in place. In practice, this meant that must somebody snag their foot on your cable television, it would harmlessly separate from your maker. In the same situations, a PC utilizing a barrel-based connector would end up pirouetting throughout the space before landing with an unceremonious thud.
This came at a time when Apple was changing from PowerPC to Intel chips, and numerous feared Cupertino would lose its distinctness amid a sea of other PC makers. MagSafe was as much a security feature as it became part of the Mac’s identity.
However MagSafe wasn’t best either. Resilience was be a major problem with early models, and it wasn’t uncommon to see charging bricks held together by gaffer tape and prayers. They were likewise known for getting incredibly hot throughout usage, with some early models decried as a fire threat Replacements weren’t cheap either, and the expense led some towards economical and unlicensed Chinese knock-offs, which in many cases were dangerous.
When Apple started its discontinuation in 2016, it provoked a fierce protest from users who perceived USB-C as a step back in terms of performance. By 2019, MagSafe had been completely withdrawn from Apple’s laptop line-up following the cessation of the 2017 MacBook Air.
News of MagSafe’s return isn’t all that unexpected. Apple began evaluating the waters late last year with a semi-revival of the tech on the iPhone 12 series. Owners of Apple’s latest mobes can now affix accessories and cordless battery chargers to the back of their gadgets, thanks to a constellation of incorporated magnets. This has proven fairly popular.
Beyond that, Apple is apparently gaining from the errors of the past five years, particularly when it pertains to its laptop portfolio. The best example of this is the discontinuation of the hated Butterfly Keyboard, which compromised resilience and typing comfort for the sake of slightly thinner laptop computers.
Still, there’s more space to improve. While it’s unlikely to see the return of USB-A or dedicated HDMI, it would be great to see Apple bring back the built-in SD card slot of yore. Repairability remains another Achilles’ heel worth attending to. ®