iPhone 13's MagSafe wallet is better than ever
According to research by Pixie, an iPhone location app, 20 percent of Americans misplace their wallets every week, spending $2.7 billion a year to replace items that are never found. But Apple introduced the MagSafe leather iPhone wallet for the iPhone 12 last year and this year Apple released a new version of its iPhone leather wallet with MagSafe alongside the Find My-enabled iPhone 13. That means you can track its location if it's detached from the phone, much like Apple's AirTag.
Not exactly AirTag
MagSafe is a small coil located on the back of an iPhone that ensures your smartphone can be charged wirelessly without worrying about exactly where you put your phone on your wireless charger. It also provides space for various accessories on the back of the smartphone -- one of which is this booth.
MagSafe creates a powerful connection between your wallet and your phone, though I've found it can sometimes accidentally detach from your phone. You can't get your credit card or ID card out of your wallet without first removing it from your phone.
However, a redesigned leather iPhone wallet with MagSafe, released alongside the iPhone 13, supports the Find My app and is now available for purchase in the Apple Store.
This means you can see the wallet's last location on the app's map, and you'll be notified when the wallet is separated from your smartphone for more than a minute. However, unlike AirTag, if you misplace your wallet, you can't make it emit an electronic beep to help you find it more easily.
It also doesn't have Precision Finding, which uses ultra-wideband radio technology to determine your iPhone's distance and orientation from objects, and displays on-screen information and haptic feedback to help you locate AirTag. Apple's Find My device network can't help you get your wallet back if it actually gets lost, rather than temporarily misplaced.
AirTag also offers some of the functionality that comes with wallets -- assigning your phone number to the accessory. In the case of wallets, this means that if someone finds a wallet and attaches it to their phone, a notification with a phone number will appear on the screen asking them to call you. However, unlike AirTags, this message didn't show up when we clicked on the wallet on another iPhone and Android smartphone that supports near-field communication.
How to use "Find My" to locate your MagSafe wallet
The Find My for the MagSafe wallet is very easy to set up. As soon as you place the wallet accessory directly on your phone or M agSafe-compatible case, the phone will recognize the wallet and ask if you want to add it to Find My. To do this, open Find My App and click the Devices TAB. In the list, you'll see the wallet, along with where and when it was last connected to your iPhone. Click on the wallet in the list and you'll see where it is on the map -- at least giving you a place to start your search.
Here, you can find directions on Apple Maps and adjust whether you'll be notified when your wallet is separated from your phone and whether you want your phone number to show up when someone connects it to an iPhone. For some, the MagSafe wallet idea makes perfect sense. There's no worn-out slot in your phone case anymore because you've swiped your card multiple times, and for those who want to travel light, that means you can leave your normal wallet at home -- it fits comfortably into three cards.
But at $59 / £59 / A $95, the leather iPhone wallet with MagSafe is about the same as a Coach credit card and is definitely not something you buy on a whim.
For now,I'd rather stick with Apple Pay, where I can keep digital copies of my credit and debit cards as well as loyalty cards and keep a traditional wallet ID, at least until the iPhone leather Wallet MagSafe AirTag features are baked.