Apple’s new battery pack could solve my biggest complaint about the iPhone 12 Mini

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iPhone 12 Mini and iPhone 12 screen
Apple’s iPhone 12 Mini (left) alongside the iPhone 12 (right).

  • Apple just launched the MagSafe Battery Pack for the iPhone 12.
  • It’s a small magnetic attachment that can charge an iPhone 12 with 5W of power.
  • It could be especially useful for the iPhone 12 Mini given its short battery life.

Apple fans who prefer the smaller-sized iPhone 12 Mini have to make one important sacrifice: battery life. But Apple’s latest product should address that shortcoming.

The company just launched the $99 MagSafe Battery Pack, a wireless charging accessory designed to seamlessly connect to the iPhone 12. The new battery pack is available to order now from Apple’s website and comes in one white color option. It looks to be about the same size as Apple’s MagSafe Wallet and attaches to the back of the iPhone 12 lineup via magnets, just like Apple’s other MagSafe accessories.

The new attachment charges with five watts of power when being used wirelessly and 15 watts when plugged into a Lightning cable with a 20 watt power source. It requires Apple’s iOS 14.7 update in order to work and begins charging instantly once connected to a compatible iPhone.

The MagSafe Battery Pack could fix my biggest issue with the iPhone 12 Mini

The MagSafe Battery Pack works with all iPhone 12 models, but it could be particularly appealing to iPhone 12 Mini owners. That’s because Apple’s smallest iPhone 12 is also the shortest when it comes to battery life.

During my testing, the iPhone 12 Mini‘s battery dipped down to 23% after 9.5 hours of use, while the regular iPhone 12 had 34% of its battery left after 15 hours of similar usage. That’s probably long enough to get through an entire work day including your commute, but you’ll probably find yourself reaching for an outlet in the early evening.

Battery life will vary depending on a variety of factors such as screen brightness and app usage. But I’m not alone in bemoaning the iPhone 12 Mini’s battery life. Several other reviewers, including those at The Wall Street Journal, Gizmodo, The Verge, and PCMag all pointed out the iPhone 12 Mini’s shorter battery life as being a key drawback.

Of course, you can just purchase the regular iPhone 12 for about the same price as buying the iPhone 12 Mini with the new battery pack. But that doesn’t help the audience of iPhone users out there that prefer the iPhone 12 Mini’s more pocketable design.

As I wrote in my review of the iPhone 12 Mini, it’s much easier to type and scroll with one hand using the iPhone 12 Mini. This phone would have been incredibly useful during my morning commute before I started working from home in 2020, considering I’ve often struggled to operate the larger-sized iPhone 11 or 11 Pro with one hand while hanging on to a subway pole.

Are there other charging packs for the iPhone 12 Mini?

There are also other cheaper options available for those who want to extend their iPhone 12 Mini’s battery life, as is typically the case with Apple’s products. The $50 Mophie Snap+Juice Pack is probably the closest competitor to Apple’s MagSafe Battery Pack. It’s a MagSafe-compatible wireless charging pack that also seamlessly snaps onto the back of any MagSafe-compatible iPhone to provide an extra charge. It also works with Qi-enabled wireless devices from Samsung, Google, and other smartphone makers.

But Apple’s battery pack looks notably slimmer than most others I’ve seen, including the Mophie Snap+Juice. That might not sound like a big deal. But its sleeker design means the Apple MagSafe Battery Pack is probably better at giving the iPhone 12 Mini a much-needed battery boost while preserving its most appealing characteristic: its compact size.

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