It's safe to say that Apple's MagSafe magnetic charging pucks for iPhone have not created the amazing snap-on accessory ecosystems we'd hoped for. The company chose its traditional tight licensing stranglehold instead of freely allowing manufacturers to create gadgets that power and communicate with an Apple device. The two main components of MagSafe, a wireless charging coil and an array of magnets, were free to use. There are a wide array of different accessories.

Apple is trying something new. Apple is about to make a change to the standard. It is contributing to a new version of Qi that is similar to Magsafe.

For better or for worse, it means that MagSafe is coming toAndroid. According to Paul Golden of the Wireless Power Consortium, there is no reason to believe that future Qi2 certified products wouldn't work with both Apple and SAMSUNG.

It mostly sounds better. Golden says the idea is to make sure the coils are tightly coupled and aligned so they can charge at full speed, unlike how Apple currently limits the speed at which the phone can be charged to half- speed.

Image of a bare MagSafe charging puck.
Today, Apple reportedly makes manufacturers build an entire Apple MagSafe puck into their MagSafe accessories.
Image: ChargerLab

Golden says that there's no reason to think that a future Qi2 charge wouldn't work with both phones. The same magnetic power profile as MagSafe is being contributed by Apple, a chair of the board of directors.

The WPC is doing more than that. The WPC intends to take advantage of guaranteed magneticcoupling to give us faster charging speeds, even though the Qi 2.0 release is mostly about adding magnets. The next version of Qi2 will have a significantly higher power profile level when we finish with the spec.

There is a chance of charging devices that don't have flat charging coils. According to the press release, the launch of the Qi2 standard will further expand the wireless charging market by opening the market to new accessories that wouldn't be charged using current flat surface toflat surface devices. Victoria can't wait.

Picture of a Belkin charger with spots for the iPhone and Apple Watch, as well as a standard Qi charging pad.
Apple Watches and iPhones, never the twain shall meet — might one pad charge both someday?
Image: Belkin

Four paragraphs ago, I said "for worse" if things are so good. There are a few things that make me think. Golden confirms that the Qi2 standard doesn't have the same pattern of magnets as MagSafe, and that it's not clear what will happen with current phones because of that.

The MagSafe products that are currently in the market, they don't share that with us. Is Apple going to abandon its existing MagSafe products in exchange for a better version?

We asked for comment or an interview from Apple, but they didn't reply.

It is believed to be pronounced "Chee two." I'm going to call it "Cheetah."

There is more than one thing that is related to that wholeAuthentication thing. According to Golden, Apple and other manufacturers could tell their devices to refuse to charge from non-certified products if they wanted. It might lead to better user experiences, but it isn't the free marketplace of wireless charging and magnets we have today.

I am sorry, but the Qi2 certification won't make sure that magnets are strong enough to stick and stay without sliding. Product design issues are determined by the manufacturer. I was hoping that the part of the wild west compatible with MagSafe would be solved here.

I wonder what Apple gets out of giving MagSafe to its competitors. I think it's about control. With Europe and India mandating the use of the USB-C, the company won't have its Lightning accessory ecosystem, and it couldn't control the amount of magnets coming out of China. It might corral an upcoming accessory ecosystems into something it really likes.

It could be that Apple is giving up on direct control in favor of speeding up a technology that will benefit from long-term. It is known that Apple was behind the creation of the light peak. After Intel shepherded it, it was donated to become part of standardusb.

Products should arrive in time for the holidays, with the completion of the spec in the middle of this year.