MagSafe Battery Packs vs Traditional Power Banks: Which One is Right for You?
Nowadays, power banks are practically everyone’s go-to travel companions. Even though our phones have evolved to be extensions of ourselves and have become increasingly intelligent, their battery life is still a major drawback for most smartphones. Nevertheless, we are fortunate to have power banks and MagSafe battery packs to ensure that we have a problem-free day.
As new ideas are dawning on the technological space, we begin to see competition as well as variations in products. However, we all know that the Apple line has always stood out and will continue to. For this reason, some people are curious to know whether or not the MagSafe battery pack is better than the traditional power banks. If you’re still in the dark, count yourself fortunate because this article will illuminate your path in making the right choices between Magsafe Battery Packs and traditional power banks.
Power banks have been a chief in the game until the advent of MagSage technology brought about more advanced devices like the MagSafe Battery Packs which have undoubtedly boosted users’ confidence over time. At first, when the MagSafe Battery Pack was launched, the controversies and worries surrounding its use, durability, and effectiveness were pretty much exaggerated. Power banks and MagSafe battery packs all have drawbacks just like everything else. Even though these drawbacks won’t stop you from purchasing one, you still need to be aware of its restrictions and the type that is most suitable for you.
Now, Let’s See Some Of The Key Differences…
Easy to Carry, Use Attach to Your Phone
When we look at things just the way they are, it is obvious that the MagSafe battery packs are easier to carry, use and also attach to your phone. If you look at the traditional power banks, they do not have any magnetic technology that would allow them easily get affixed to your smartphone. In some cases, you either look for a safe place to keep both your phone and power bank or you suffer the stress of holding both in your hands. However, with the Magsafe battery pack, you can seamlessly hold your phone and battery pack together as though they are one. You do not have to worry about fall-offs because the MagSafe technology ensures your Phone and battery pack’s safety.
Wireless Effortless Charging
The only way to use the traditional power bank (which is true for virtually all types of traditional power banks) is to connect it to your phone with the aid of a USB cord. Apart from the stress of going about with your cord, you also have to deal with its maintenance. This is because cords get spoilt easily when they’re not properly kept. But the MagSafe battery pack offers you heart-warming wireless charging. Just attach your battery pack to your phone and you’re good to go. No worries about cords.
In addition to the above, the MagSafe Battery Pack has Smart Battery Cover which guarantees additional protection. It also allows you to charge with the least amount of user involvement possible while making use of the MagSafe accessory technology present in iPhone 12 and later.
We all know that the greater the capacity (mAh) of your power bank, the long-lasting it would be. As a result, when buying traditional power banks, people look for Power banks with the highest possible capacity that they can afford to purchase. In other words, if you have a phone with 4000mAh, a 10000mAh power bank would charge your phone twice over. Although third-party battery packs could still be attached via magnets, MagSafe battery packs are still the ideal choice because they trade size for power and efficiency.
Take for instance, the iPhone 14 Pro Max has a 4,323mAh battery, however, due to the low efficiency of Qi charging, it could only be charged to roughly 50% with a 5,000mAh battery. On the other hand, a 1,460mAh MagSafe Battery Pack could charge an iPhone 14 Pro Max to around 40% of its capacity. The reason why these figures might not even seem to make much sense is that a vital quantity ( which is voltage) is lacking. To make up for the iPhone’s lower 3.81V, the MagSafe Battery Pack’s 7.62V rating converts to an effective 2,920mAh. Given this figure and the great charging efficiency of MagSafe, it is understandable how the MagSafe Battery Pack can effectively supply 1,729mAh to the iPhone 14 Pro Max.
So, Which One is Right for You?
Apart from the difference in cost price (which is reasonably fair) between traditional chargers and MagSafe battery packs, I would definitely opt-in for a MagSafe Battery Pack with those sizes and charging capabilities. Upon start-up, a launch animation for the MagSafe Battery Pack displays how much battery is still inside. If a 20W external power supply is connected, it can also function as a 15W MagSafe charger and it nonetheless provides a large capacity with magnetic attachment in the smallest available form. Apple’s power pack is so compact that it easily fits in any or backpack. Apple even added to the MagSafe Battery Pack’s utility with a mid-life update. Apple upgraded the battery pack’s charging rate in April 2022 from 5W to 7.5W. Depending on the model, settings, use, and environmental factors of your iPhone, the MagSafe Battery Pack offers an extra charge that you won’t find with traditional power banks. If you’re unsure about what to buy, check out the wireless power bank below.
HaloLock 10,000mAh Kickstand Wireless Power Bank (59.99)
It is compatible with all caseless iPhone 14/13/12 series phones and iPhone 13/12 series phones with a MagSafe or HaloLock case or standard case with the HaloLock Universal Ring. With this device, your phone starts charging automatically as soon as you magnetically attach it. interestingly, you can transform your power bank into a stand for browsing or FaceTiming on the go. If you’re always busy on your phone or the type that does not appreciate any interactions, pass-through charging lets you simultaneously charge your phone and power bank without interruptions.
Without a large battery, you can now keep your iPhones charged in a compact style while moving around. Also, because it is MagSafe, it is compatible with every iPhone as long as it is an iPhone 12 or later and had a MagSafe cover. Other battery packs can accomplish the same thing, but some of those first models, which were introduced in the summer of 2020, are so large that they would not work with the iPhone 14 Pro’s enormous camera bump.
Considering everything, the MagSafe Battery Pack is undoubtedly a great investment and we’re eager to see what Apple will do next in this area.
Apple’s MagSafe Battery Pack extends your iPhone 12’s battery with a snap
The common truth with phones is that as the design gets thinner, the battery life shrinks. The iPhone 12 family is no different — 12 Mini, 12, 12 Pro and 12 Pro Max included — and on intense days with FaceTimes, lots of typing and gaming, the battery percentage can drop quickly.
So what’s the fix? Traditionally, it’s a portable battery pack that you plug in or a battery case that snaps onto your phone. The new solution is the 99 MagSafe Battery Pack, which attaches to the back and wirelessly charges your iPhone. And we’ve spent several days with the MagSafe Battery Pack, using it on the entire iPhone 12 family. Let’s let lightning spark and unpack the latest iPhone accessory.
If you want a purpose-built battery that doesn’t add much weight and brings a ton of function, we’d say the 99 MagSafe Battery Pack fits the bill.
The who, what and how
Who this is for: The MagSafe Battery Pack is a purpose-built accessory that takes advantage of the iPhone 12 design and aims to stretch the battery life a bit more. It’s ideal if you don’t want to be bothered by carrying a separate portable charger.
What you need to know: This accessory gives iPhone 12, 12 Mini, 12 Pro and 12 Pro Max users a simple and engaging way to extend battery life. over, it integrates with iOS in a way that other batteries or options can’t. However, it’s not the longest-lasting or fastest charger out there.
How this compares: Apple’s MagSafe Battery Pack is neither the thinnest nor the fastest portable charging solution. Traditional battery packs might be larger and a whole separate device, but they offer more mAhs and ports, which let you charge more devices. Third-party solutions — like Anker’s or Hyper’s magnetic power banks — still easily attach to the back but don’t offer the software integration and slim designs. Often, they’re larger and produce a bit more heat when in use. No other portable battery offers deep integration with iOS, though. The MagSafe Battery Pack is firmly an extender that won’t fully recharge an iPhone but offers convenience and a few neat tricks for 99.
Snaps to the back
The MagSafe Battery Pack is centered around power and design, the latter of which takes unique advantage of Apple’s MagSafe technology. This Battery Pack quickly snaps to the back of the iPhone 12 Mini, 12, 12 Pro or 12 Pro Max. Magnets built into the back of the iPhone match up with magnets on the battery pack itself. And it snaps with a satisfying thud on the back.
Like Apple’s Smart Battery Cases, this accessory will create a hump on the back of your phone. The MagSafe Battery Packs measures in at about 11 millimeters thick and weighs in at 113 grams. That’s smaller than the original iPhone and close to the size of a MagSafe Wallet. It’s a hard shell plastic design that comes only in white with a gray Apple logo centered at the top. Previous Smart Battery Cases have opted for a soft silicone shell, but this harder plastic seems better against denim and drops. Namely, it doesn’t scuff as quickly and doesn’t show dye from jeans after some early tests.
The bottom of the MagSafe Battery Pack features a Lightning port and a single LED indicator that lets you know when it’s charging. You won’t find a Lightning cable included in the box, though you’ll need one to charge the battery pack. Here’s the best Lightning cable of 2021. When you plug the Battery Pack into a Lightning cable for charge, the LED indicator will glow orange for a bit, and green when it’s fully charged. We imagine Apple opted for the Lightning port as you already have that for the iPhone it will be attached to.
Now, regardless of your iPhone — 12 Mini, 12, 12 Pro or 12 Pro Max — you’ll get the same MagSafe Battery Pack. It’s a one-size-fits-all approach. On an iPhone 12 Mini, it covers the bottom back, matching perfectly with the edges. On the 12 or 12 Pro, you have some more wiggle room on the left, right and bottom. With the 12 Pro Max, it sits centered on the back with plenty of space. The bigger the iPhone, the more back room.
So it’s a small hump on the back that, while noticeable, isn’t obnoxious. The iPhone 12 or 12 Pro is still easy to hold with the MagSafe Battery Pack on and it makes the 12 Mini easy to cradle. We’re also happy to report that it still fits in our skinny jeans front The magnet provides a strong connection that we haven’t been able to knock off by waving our phone around or sliding in and out of spaces like jeans.
There’s nothing truly fancy here, though we can’t help but wonder why Apple didn’t offer this new accessory in other colors. A MagSafe Battery Pack color-matched to a purple iPhone 12 or blue 12 Pro would have been delightful.
It’s an extender, not a super-fast portable battery
The MagSafe Battery Pack isn’t competing against traditional portable batteries or fast chargers. It’s best thought of as a battery extender. When you have a long day where the iPhone 12 needs to go the extra mile, you can attach the MagSafe Battery Pack and get a charge going.
Apple doesn’t typically share many specs, and with the MagSafe Battery Pack, the company initially didn’t state the battery size. The rear of the battery pack reveals the cell inside: a 1,460mAh (11.3Wh). Both numbers relate to total capacity, but the Wh is close to that of an iPhone 12 or 12 Pro, so we’d imagine it’s not a small 1,460mAh cell inside but potentially two of them. Apple’s charge rate here is faster than alternatives from Anker (45.99; amazon.com) or Hyper (39.99; hypershop.com), which feature bigger cells and a cheaper price tag.
And after nearly a week of testing, you can expect the MagSafe Battery Pack to deliver around 60% of power to the iPhone 12 or 12 Pro. With the iPhone 12 Mini, that percentage is higher, and on the 12 Pro Max, it’s slightly lower. It’s firmly an extender here, though, and the amount of power you’ll get will vary depending on what you’re doing on the iPhone while charging. With the MagSafe Battery Pack just attached to the iPhone, it wirelessly charges at a relatively slow 5 watts. This is both to conserve battery health and for heat. And having it connected doesn’t generate a tremendous amount of heat either. It’s similar to the level of warmth that a Smart Battery Case delivers.
For instance, being on FaceTime or playing a game is more taxing on the battery and the charger, therefore you won’t see a real-time wild jump, especially at 5 watts. We attached a fully charged MagSafe Battery Pack to a dead iPhone 12, and after an hour of charging, it hit 46% with about 25% battery left in the pack. That’s pretty great. During a long workday, we attached the MagSafe Battery Pack before our commute home to ensure we’d have enough battery life. On a regular night, we’d end with about 15% to 20%, and we left with 30% to 40% while using the device for streaming and communication while commuting home. So, yes, the charge varies, but it’s an extender when just attached to the back.
If you have the MagSafe Battery Pack plugged in with a cable while it’s attached to the back of your iPhone 12, the charging speed zips up to 15 watts. That’s a much faster standard that the MagSafe Wireless Charging Puck can produce. It’s pretty handy as well since the MagSafe Battery Pack is dual purpose; you can use it to keep the iPhone going while on the go or have it plugged in on your desk in a wireless charging capacity.
What’s really cool is that if you have your iPhone 12 Mini, 12, 12 Pro or 12 Pro Max plugged in with the MagSafe Battery Pack attached, the phone will charge the pack as well. This is done through reverse wireless charging, and it’s the first time this capability has been unlocked on the iPhone. It’s similar to how the Pixel 5 or a Samsung Galaxy can charge a pair of earbuds or another Qi-enabled device off the back. This charging feature is a pretty neat bonus.
Alongside a simple design and extra battery life, the 99 price tag also affords some convenience. The MagSafe Battery Pack is integrated with iOS in a way that no other battery pack can be. Similar to what happens when you connect a MagSafe wallet or case, the MagSafe Battery Pack flashes a graphic and the battery level of the pack once you connect it. The battery indicator in the top right corner of iOS will glow green when it starts to receive power. As soon as it’s attached, it will begin delivering power to the iPhone. You will need iOS 14.7 to take full advantage of all the MagSafe Battery Pack has to offer.
Like previous Smart Battery Cases, it’s all about the convenience here — not the size of the battery. You can get much larger batteries for less than the MagSafe Battery Pack’s 99 price tag, but they don’t snap to the back of your phone in an instant or integrate with iOS. You can monitor the battery life of the pack right in a widget, and the iPhone can push power to the MagSafe.
If you want a purpose-built battery that doesn’t add much weight and brings a ton of function, we’d say the 99 MagSafe Battery Pack will help you cross that finish line at the end of a busy day. It’s not an endurance charger, though. Those looking for a purely larger amount of power should look at Hyper’s or Anker’s magnetic packs.
Note: The above reflect the retailers’ listed price at the time of publication.
Best MagSafe Power Bank For the iPhone 14
If you’ve been an iPhone user for a while, then you know that MagSafe charging is becoming a staple feature on new models. And if you’re looking for a good and reliable MagSafe charger, then you’ve come to the right place. We’ve done the research and found the Best MagSafe Power Bank For the iPhone 14 (or for any MagSafe compatible device).
So, whether you’re looking for a fast charger or one that can charge your phone wirelessly, we’ve got you covered. Below is a Top 5 list of the Best MagSafe Power Banks for the iPhone 14.
iPhone 14 Update – We’ve tried each battery bank in our test group against the iPhone 14 and this list still stands.
Best MagSafe Power Bank For the iPhone 14 (and iPhone 12/13)
For this Top 5 list, we based our scoring on:
- Battery Capacity – Stated vs. Rated vs. Tested
- Strength of the magnets – Measured the amount of force required to remove battery pack from iPhone
- Size and weight – General dimensions
- Charge speeds – Timed how long it took to charge an iPhone 13 in 10% increments
- Extra features – Anything else that made our lives easier.
Out of the 12 chargers that we tested, notable products that didn’t make the Top 5 include battery packs from Logixx, Apple and Pitaka.
#5 Spigen ArcHybrid MagSafe Battery Pack
The Spigen ArcHybrid MagSafe Battery Pack is an incredibly…average product. The 5000 mAh charger has a rated capacity of 3600 which is generally close to our tests. The LED indicators make it easy to check the battery levels, and the wireless charging function coupled with the pass-through charging makes it convenient to top-off multiple devices at the same time.
The magnetic strength of the Spigen ArcHybrid MagSafe Battery Pack is better than average, keeping the charger on the iPhone from most mild bumps.
From a charging perspective, the Spigen ArcHybrid MagSafe Battery Pack offers 7.5W of wireless charging which oddly enough, puts it in the middle of the pack in terms of charge speed.
For this round of testing, the Spigen ArcHybrid MagSafe Battery Pack was actually faster than Apple’s own MagSafe Charger. Charging the battery pack from dead to full took about 2.5 hours.
#4 AOGuerbe 10000 mAh power bank
AOGuerbe 10000 mAh power bank is one of the cheaper products in this list at 50. This might sound as a steal at first glance but there are a lot of caveats in this product.
First of all, the magnetic connection of the battery pack isn’t as great as other products. It’s actually missing the lower magnet. It looks like it’s there but it isn’t. Which means the battery pack is going to rotate on your phone.
AOGuerbe 10000 mAh power bank is also the biggest battery pack we reviewed and the one that feels the cheapest made. The seams feel quite rough and the MagSafe rings sit too far up on the battery pack. AOGuerbe 10000 mAh power bank looks ridiculous when mounted on the iPhone 12 or 13 mini.
However, AOGuerbe 10000 mAh power bank does have some extra features and charging speeds that makes them worthy of their spot. It had one of the faster charge times. The power bank outputs 15W’s for wireless charging so your iPhone will recognize it as a MagSafe charger and it can pass through charge through the USB-A and C ports. Which means you can charge your older Apple Watch and iPad’s if you wanted to. It also has a digital readout to tell you how much charge is in the pack.
This MagSafe battery clone can triple your iPhone’s charge [Review]
Power banks in the new MyCharge Mag-Lock series use the magnets from Apple’s MagSafe system to attach to an iPhone. They come in 3000mAh, 6000mAh and 9000mAh capacities, with the largest able to triple the length of time a handset can go between charges. No power cable is needed and you can use your iPhone while it’s charging.
I put all three sizes of the power bank to the test. Read on to find out how they stood up.
MyCharge Mag-Lock review
These accessories are meant to be used in public and MyCharge it a lot of thought into their appearance. All of the three devices are available in the five iPhone 12 colors: graphite, Pacific blue, white, red and purple. Their finish has been designed to protect against scratching, stains, and fading colors.
Every edge and corner is rounded so these products fit with the look of an iPhone.
The accessories include a raised coil for some separation between pack and phone, helping to dissipate heat better than typical flat battery packs.
As noted, these devices take advantage of the MagSafe system. This includes magnets built into the back of the iPhone 12 and iPhone 13 series. The magnets attach to ones in MyCharge Mag-Lock power banks and line up the charging coils every time. And they hold the two devices together while you’re using your handset. The connection is solid — I had no problems with them slipping apart.
However, the Mag-Lock batteries do not offer the faster charging capabilities of MagSafe. They put out 5 watts, which is far less than the 15W of some MagSafe accessories. This means it can take about 3.5 hours to give an iPhone a complete charge.
MyCharge built in a audible “twing” when you connect or disconnect your iPhone. Or begin recharging any of these power banks.
The Mag-Lock series gets its power through a USB-C port on the bottom edge. A charging cable comes in the box for just this, or you can use the one for a Mac or iPad.
As a bonus, you can use the USB-C port to charge a device that doesn’t have MagSafe. And this works while an iPhone is also charging. I tested with my iPad Pro to be sure.
The smallest of the three Mag-Lock options is 4.0 inches by 2.6 in. by 0.4 in. It weighs 0.24 pounds. I found it entirely practical to clip this to the back of my iPhone and keep using the handset while it charges.
The two cling together tightly, and the combination isn’t too bulky. It’s not ideal — you’re only going to want to use the Mag-Lock when you need it, not all the time. But it adds hours of use.
This “baby bear” version stores 3000mAh. In my real-world test, it gave a 6.1-inch iPhone 12 a 53% charge. That’s enough to get you through the rest of an extra-long day after the built-in battery starts to run out.
Exactly how of a battery bump you’ll get depends on your device. The Pro Max models have significantly larger built-in batteries and so this power bank is relatively smaller. It’s still the same amount of power, though.
MyCharge Mag-Lock 6000mAh
The “mama bear” version of MyCharge’s new power banks is 4.0 inches by 2.6 in. by 0.7 in. It weighs 0.36 pounds.
In my testing, I found it possible to keep using my iPhone with this clipped to the back, but the combination is somewhat unwieldy. The battery is thick and a bit heavy.
But don’t lock yourself into the idea that the only way to use a Mag-Lock power bank is while holding it. You wouldn’t expect to do that with a standard 6000mAh battery. In this case, the real advantage of MagSafe is that you don’t have to worry about having a charging cable. Just put the iPhone onto the battery and you’re good to go.
Also, the battery can act as a stand with an 6.1-inch iPhone 13 or iPhone 12. Attach it to the back of your handset, put the combination in landscape mode and you’re ready to watch a movie. I’m not sure how well this will work with an iPhone Pro Max or mini, however.
Over multiple test runs, the 6000mAh version of the MyCharge Mag-Lock gave a 6.1-inch iPhone 12 a 120% charge. That’s enough to get you though a second day of use.
Again, you’ll see a smaller increase in battery percentage if you have an iPhone Pro Max but will get the same amount of power.
MyCharge Mag-Lock 9000mAh
And now we get to “poppa bear.” This largest version is 4.0 inches by 2.6 in. by 0.9 in. It weighs 0.49 pounds. You may have noticed a theme here: the only dimension in which the three accessories vary in is thickness. And weight, of course.
Part of MyCharge’s marketing for this series says, “the larger the Mag-Lock — the easier the hold.” True, it’s easier to hold the power bank because it’s almost an inch thick. But it also adds almost half a pound. To me, only in case of emergency should you should hold your iPhone with this version of the series attached. The rest of the time, put your handset down to charge like you would with any other hefty battery.
That said, the trick of using the battery pack as a stand works in both portrait and landscape mode with this jumbo-size accessory.
During my tests, the 9000mAh version of the MyCharge Mag-Lock gave a 6.1-inch iPhone 12 a 189% charge. (Which took multiple test runs, of course.) That’s enough to get through a long weekend of camping without access to a wall socket.
To repeat myself just in case, those who use an iPhone Pro Max will see a lower increase in battery level though they’re getting the same amount of power.
Having to carry around a cable to charge my iPhone with a power bank is an unnecessary irritant. And with MagSafe accessories like the MyCharge Mag-Lock series the cable becomes unnecessary.
The range in storage capacity for these external batteries means each is likely to appeal to different customer. The 3000mAh version can be used to give a quick boost while clipped to an iPhone. The 9000mAh one can keep your device going for days and days but you’ll probably only want to attach it overnight. The 6000mAh is a mix of the two — your iPhone is heavy but usable with it clipped on, and the power bank is capable of more than doubling the battery life.
You can pick up the 3000mAh battery pack for 49.99 on the myCharge website.
The “mama bear” 6000mAh version is 59.99 on the myCharge website.
And the “big daddy” 9000mAh one is 69.99 on the myCharge website.
Other companies make their own MagSafe batteries that clip to your iPhone. There’s the Mophie Snap Juice Pack Mini that holds 5000mAh. Don’t miss my review.
And there’s also the Sanho HyperJuice Magnetic Wireless Battery Pack (39.99). It has a 5000mAh capacity as well. I reviewed this one, too.
Or there is Apple’s MagSafe Battery Pack. This has a few tricks, like iOS integration, but holds less power and costs 99.
MyCharge provided Cult of Mac with review units for this article. See our reviews policy, and check out other in-depth reviews of Apple-related items.