Apple’s seemingly abandoned “Magic Charger” appears in new photos

Apple’s first-party lineup of MagSafe charging accessories for the iPhone is fairly limited: you’ve got the standard MagSafe puck, the MagSafe Duo, the underwhelming MagSafe Battery Pack, and well… that’s it. But new images indicate that Apple at some point considered releasing a metal stand with an integrated MagSafe charger.

The photos and related details were shared by Twitter user @TheBlueMister and subsequently covered by MacRumors. @TheBlueMister is among a hobbyist group of collectors on Twitter that share details about prototype and prerelease Apple devices and accessories. More than one person has gotten a hold of the “Apple Magic Charger” (that’s what it’s identified as when plugged into a Mac), which helps lend some credence to its authenticity.

The product has a thick aluminum base with a circular cutout for the MagSafe puck, which can either lie flat or be standing vertically, similar to the Apple Watch charger on the MagSafe Duo.

There’s a rubberized layer on the bottom to prevent the Magic Charger from moving around, and a permanently attached USB-C cable is also visible. The latter seems terrible for overall durability and traveling with the thing, but I guess that’s what the MagSafe Duo is meant for.

A bigger, more obvious flaw is that the Magic Charger can really only hold an iPhone in landscape orientation; The round magnetic MagSafe puck is too low to accommodate the vertical position. Nomad makes a metal MagSafe base that looks quite similar and supports 15-watt charging — but without the standing orientation.

My guess is that Apple realized the Magic Charger’s landscape-only standing position was too impractical and inconvenient before this accessory came close to being released. I’m curious what, if anything, was “magic” about its integration with the iPhone; maybe Apple was contemplating unique software experiences like those offered by Google’s Pixel Stand. Or maybe it was just a fancy name for what likely would’ve been a pricey charger.

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