MagSafe charger could make triumphant return to MacBook Pro this year

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MagSafe
MagSafe was a great Apple innovation.
Photo: Gordon Mei/Flickr CC

Apple’s MagSafe branding technically made a return last year with the iPhone 12. But the MagSafe fans most fondly recall — the neat magnetic charging system for the MacBook — is also gearing up to make a comeback.

According to a Friday report from Bloomberg, Apple is bringing back MagSafe for this year’s MacBook Pro refresh. The connector will reportedly be similar in design to the “elongated pill-shape” original MagSafe. It will provide faster charging for the MacBook.

The original MagSafe charger was a fixture of MacBooks from the first MacBook Pro in 2006 through 2016. During that time, it was used on every MacBook, MacBook Pro, and MacBook Air. In 2016, Apple started transitioning away from the MagSafe to USB-C. This transition was completed by 2019. The move to USB-C allowed Apple to ditch ports on the MacBook Pro, since it could not only be used for charging but also for data transfer and outputting video. The USB-C connector was also smaller than MagSafe.

Despite the ostensible advantages of USB-C, however, many were sad to see MagSafe go. It was one of Apple’s neatest ever designs, using magnets so that if someone tripped over your Mac cord, it would simply detach rather than pulling your laptop down to the floor.

Apple brought back the MagSafe name last year with the iPhone 12, although the only thing it had in common with the MagSafe charger was the use of magnets. Now it seems that Apple may be restoring the MagSafe charger to its rightful place as well.

USB-C isn’t going away, though. Today’s report notes that: “Despite moving away from USB-C for charging, Apple will still include multiple USB-C ports on its future Macs.”

Back to the future?

From the sound of things, Apple’s next-gen MacBook Pro will be both a next-gen refresh of Apple’s top laptop and something of a blast from the past. Bloomberg notes that it will include faster Apple Silicon processors and brighter, higher contrast display.

However, it will also supposedly bring back MagSafe, ditch the Touch Bar, include more ports, and (as with Apple’s most recent MacBooks) not include the hated Butterfly keyboard. In other words, if you’ve dreamed of a 2015 MacBook Pro with next-gen tech, this might be the MacBook for you!

New MacBook Air as well

One final note in the Bloomberg report suggests that Apple is also planning a redesigned MacBook Air. This is not expected to be released until “long after” the next MacBook Pros. There are no more details about what this redesign could entail.

Source: Bloomberg