I know we’ve all got bigger fish to fry right now, but hear me out.
Apple had a busy year in 2020. Despite a global pandemic Apple has recorded record-breaking financials, totally up-ended the personal computer market with it’s M1 chip transition, rolled out an entirely redesigned macOS Big Sur and successfully pivoted one of the biggest developer conferences on the planet to be held entirely online.
It also made a wallet. A tiny leather wallet, with magnets in it.
Of the many (many) new products Apple unleashed onto an adoring fan base in 2020, the iPhone 12 Pro was a sure highlight. A sleek, timeless new design. Stunning camera performance. Face-melting speed. 5g (if you can find it). One of the more intriguing and unexpected features of the new iPhones, however, was MagSafe — a little array of magnets on the back of the phone which serves as an interface for a series of fancy new accessories. Magnetically-aligning charging mats, quick-release car docks, fancy protective cases. And, of course, the surprisingly controversial MagSafe wallet.
A wallet with magnets? That attaches to the back of your iPhone? Sound great, right? Wrong. It’s shit and everyone hates it. It falls off when you put it in your pocket. You can’t fit all of your stuff in it. It’s too expensive. You have to take it off the phone to get your cards out. At least that’s what Tech Twitter would have you think — I’m here to tell you why they’re all wrong.
Why the Apple MagSafe Wallet isn’t Shit
It doesn’t fall off when you put it in your pocket
This has been the main criticism, so let’s get it out of the way first. The godfather of tech YouTube MKBHD (who is great — subscribe to his channel) fuelled the fire of this particular controversy when he posted a lukewarm first impressions video of the MagSafe Wallet. It contained a segment in which he demonstrates how the phone and wallet separate each time he puts his phone into his pocket, and he argues that the magnetic connection between wallet and phone is nowhere near strong enough.
That does indeed sound annoying. Thankfully, then, it’s a load of rubbish. Take a look at the segment in question for yourself . Who puts their phone into their pocket like that?! Who puts in just the tip, and then gently sliiides it the rest of the way in? I love MKBHD, but how he doesn’t miss his pocket and slam his phone onto the floor on a daily basis is beyond me.
In my experience with the MagSafe wallet, this isn’t an issue I’ve encountered. The most natural face-to-pocket movement is to just keep your hand on the back of the phone (where it already was) and then guide it into the pocket of your jeans. All one movement, no messing. This hand-shield means that the MagSafe Wallet is naturally protected from the edge of your pocket, and remains secure all the way in.
The strength of the magnetic connection between wallet and phone seems just about right to me. It generally stays attached unless I want it to come off, within reason. I don’t know what all the fuss is about.
It fits all the cards you need
The MagSafe wallet only holds about three cards. Maybe four at a push. I think that’s enough!
My MagSafe wallet holds a debit card (in case I need my banks details whilst out and about), my driving license and my gym membership card. That’s it. It may not sound like a lot, but it’s really all I need to carry with me. Maybe this is a UK/Europe thing, but contactless card terminals are everywhere. I use ApplePay 99% of the time when I go into a shop (remember shops?) and try to get away with not carrying cash unless I really have to, so I have no need to carry around all of my credit and debit cards all of the time.
I’ve never been one of those guys that dedicates an entire pocket to carrying around a bloated wallet full of old McDonalds receipts and used train tickets. I prefer my daily carries to be on the light side. The MagSafe wallet serves my card-carrying needs just fine.
It’s real nice
I ordered my MagSafe wallet from perpetually underachieving UK tech chain-store Curry’s, in black to match my iPhone 12 Pro. Predictably, they got my order wrong and sent the wrong colour — the one that arrived was brown. However, my immediate annoyance subsided once I opened the box and clicked it onto the back of my phone. I actually like it better! Apparently Curry’s know me better than I know myself.
The MagSafe wallet is simple in its execution. It looks and feels just like a traditional, high quality slim leather card wallet. We all know these things are mass produced in the millions, but if you took away the embossed Apple logo on the front you’d be forgiven for thinking it was boutique hand crafted. The stitching is neat, it feels solid and the materials feel high quality.
At £59.00 it’s a bit expensive for a little card wallet, but it really is quite a nice little thing overall. If you fancy splurging on a luxury, I’d say it’s worth it.
It’s a fidget toy
Much to the annoyance of my wife, I find myself constantly clacking and un-clacking the wallet from the back of my phone. The digital “thunk” noise your iPhone makes is super satisfying. In fact, I spent the the first week of owning the MagSafe Wallet running around showing it to anyone bored enough to pay attention, like Uncle Bryn and his new digital camera at a wedding.
There you have it — the Apple MagSafe Wallet isn’t shit. A perfect scientific argument. Despite what Tech Twitter would have you think, I’d actually highly recommend the MagSafe Wallet. If you’re someone who has a pretty minimal daily carry, it’s a great option. Whilst expensive, it’s well-made, looks good, feels good and works as well as can reasonably be expected. If you’re in the market for a wallet that sticks to the back of your phone (niche, I know) then you can’t go wrong.
Buy the Apple MagSafe Wallet on Amazon - https://amzn.to/2NSIeBA