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Apple recently updated the MagSafe Battery Pack firmware to allow the unit to wirelessly charge an iPhone faster — but you may still not have it. Here's how to force update the firmware.
The MagSafe Battery Pack is a great accessory, intended to give your iPhone a boost to its battery life. Taking advantage of the magnets used by MagSafe, the white box sticks to the back of the iPhone and transfers power wirelessly.
The handy little box can perform 15W charging with an iPhone when it is connected to a power source, equalling the performance of other MagSafe charging stands. When using its 2,000mAh battery, the charging speed drops quite a bit.
Instead of 15W aided by a power outlet, the MagSafe Battery Pack provided the iPhone with 5W wireless charging at launch. As you may expect, this charges an iPhone much slower than when connected via Lightning.
However, on April 19, Apple released a firmware update specifically for the MagSafe Battery Pack. That update to version 2.7.b.0 was found to include a change to charging that enabled a faster 7.5W rate.
All MagSafe Battery Pack owners need to enjoy the faster portable charging of their iPhone using the power accessory is to perform the update.
Updating the MagSafe Battery Pack
The first thing to do is to check whether or not the firmware has been applied, as it is offered as an over-the-air update. You can check the version number on your iPhone.
How to check your MagSafe Battery Pack firmware version
- Attach the MagSafe Battery Pack to the rear of your iPhone.
- Open the Settings app, select General then About, followed by MagSafe Battery Pack.
- The firmware version will be shown in this menu.
When connected, you can see the version number of the battery pack on the iPhone in this way. If it says 2.7.b.0 or a newer version code, then it has been enabled.
If you wait long enough, the battery will update itself. As an over-the-air update, your iPhone will attempt to check for an update and install it to the MagSafe Battery Pack if one is available.
This is an automatic process, but it's not immediate. Apple's support pages state it could "take about a week" for the update to process in this way, and it needs the iPhone and the battery pack to be connected to do so. So, it's possible you may not even have it yet.
As is typical for Apple's software updates, there is a manual method available to install the firmware. For this, you will need either a Mac or an iPad that can take a USB or USB-C connection, and is also able to access the Internet.
How to manually update the firmware of the MagSafe Battery Pack
- Connect the MagSafe Battery Pack to a Mac or iPad. Use a Lightning-to-USB or Lightning-to-USB-C cable to make the connection.
- Keep the battery pack connected while the automatic process takes place. Apple says the firmware update should take around five minutes to complete.
Once the update has been applied, check the firmware version number to make sure it has completed successfully.