The Apple MagSafe Wallet was an innovative first developed by Apple in 2020 and spun a new innovation of wallet that combines a magnetic attachment feature, minimalism, and the idea of ‘keeping your every day carry down to a minimum’ but combining both your wallet and smartphone into one item. But what exactly is MagSafe and is it right for you and your wallet.
In a nutshell, the feature is something included on all the latest models of iPhone including all iPhone models (Pro, Max & Mini). In simple terms, it includes a new way to charge your device but also includes a strong magnetic component on the back allowing such accessories (such as wallets) to be attached.
The Innovation of Apple
I’m not going to lie, in my original review of the MagSafe Wallet wasn’t glowing. The wallet hybrid is not without its issues mainly coming down to its weak magnetics being unable to efficiently and effectively hold onto the MagSafe device itself. This, along with its hefty price tag, leaves a lot to be desired degrading the wallet and I have no doubt Apple will resolve these issues in up-and-coming versions.
That being said, whenever a new innovative device, or wallet, in this case, comes onto the market it’s almost guaranteed other businesses and brands with jump onto the innovation game trying to get a piece of Apple’s lucrative pie. After all, Apple is one of the most recognizable and valuable brands in the world, and as much as many may hate it, what they say goes.
Already just months after the release of the MagSafe Wallet alternatives of Apple’s innovation has already been released into the market many of which have improved upon the initial design by Apple, with many, coming in at a much cheaper price tag. Today we’re going to be exploring some of these alternative MagSafe Wallets, give our honest opinion on each and provide you with some alternatives that we think surpass Apple’s MagSafe wallet in every way.
Ekster MagSafe Cardholder
Ekster, to this day, still ranks as one of the highest-rated wallet brands on the market. As one of the brands that kickstarted the pop-up card wallet, Ekster continually innovative creating a wide range of highly functional wallets that retain a very vintage and classy look to them. Recently Ekster joined the fun, creating their own version of the MagSafe Wallet. On first inspection, the wallet looks very similar to Apple’s version, and, to be honest, it kind of is.
The designs of both wallets a very similar both opting for a minimalist design and the use of fine-grain leather that’s soft to the touch and highly durable. Where Ekster changes things slightly comes down to the functionality of the wallet. Ekster integrates an additional card slot (two total) which provides a higher capacity, but also easier access to those cards and they’re segregated. Comparing the strength of the magnets Ekster also wins as I generally found less slippage and better grip.
The Biggest advantage of going with the Ekster MagSafe Cardholder comes down to its price tag. While Apple likes to go overkill with its high prices (the Apple MagSafe comes in at $59.00, Ekster’s version can be bought for almost half that price at $33.00. Considering the quality of Ekster’s version is fantastic and in some regards better than Apple, it’s a clear winner for us in choosing the cheaper wallet – Ekster is the choice. For more information visit Ekster’s official website using the link below.
MOFT Snap-On Wallet
The MOFT Snap-On Wallet is probably the most innovative design variation on this list. MOFT has taken Apple’s wallet given it the same form factor and size but drastically improved upon its functionality. This new functionality comes in the inclusion of a fold-out, piece of leather, and extendable body, that enables the wallet to transform into a stand enabling you to prop up your iPhone. Along with this, the MOFT Wallet also keeps cards more secure thanks to a Flip down to revel system that keeps up to 3 credit cards (same as Apple’s) in place but covered to prevent cards from falling out. The Magnet is basically the same as Apple’s and I found no real difference in terms of MOFT’s ability to securely stick on your iPhone.
After all the improvements made by MOFT, you’d expect them to sell their MagSafe Wallet for at least smile prices to Apple. But this is not the case at all. The MOFT Snap-On Wallet comes in at nearly half the price retailing at just $29.99 – a fantastic price in our opinion. For more information on the MOFT MagSafe Wallet check them out directly using the link below.
Fantom C Wallet
Fantom is best known for its array of metal wallets that use a similar style of cascading credit/debit card mechanism to easily access your stuff at ease. They first gained popularity through a successful Kickstarter campaign thanks to its amazing build quality, minimalist size, and distinctive (and one of a kind) design that comes in a variety of materials, colors, and materials. With the release of the MagSafe Wallet Fantom are back and recently crowdfunded their latest innovation, The Fantom C Wallet, which capitalizes on the MagSafe features by Apple to create one stylish wallet allowing you to easily secure the Fantom on the back of your phone with its magnetic properties. Although still in the funding stages having only secured backing back in late 2020 (raising over $40,000).
The only downside I can see regarding the Fantom C wallet comes down to its size and overall thickness. Coming in at 8mm, the wallet is thicker than Apple’s Magsafe wallet and does add some bulk to the wallet exaggerated being made out of hardy metal. This could have implications when it comes to storing it in your pocket as that additional size should be enough to create some discomfort and create a generally bulkier daily carry. That being said, until I get my hands on the Fantom it’s really hard to say.
Although we don’t have much information about the retail price of the Fantom C, I’m going to guess it’ll be priced similarly to the original Fantom wallet that currently retails at a price range starting at $89.00 + (this price difference is based on material, design and card capacity choice). You can check out the original Kickstarter campaign for the Fantom C wallet here, or visit their official website using the link below.
The Final wallet, or maybe I shouldn’t call it a wallet, is a little different (and it’s why I’ve left it to last). The Alphaplus is a power bank or portable charger that much like any MagSafe device sticks on the back of your wallet. In the case of the Alphaplus, this mean’s it can automatically charge your device at any time while on the move. The Alphaplus boasts a fairly 10,000 mph battery that suggests you can get an additional 5 – 15 hours of life out of your iPhone which is pretty sweet.
In terms of design, I actually think the Alphaplus looks pretty nice. Its all-metal body is sleek and comes in a nice array of colors that really comforts Apple’s minimalist and clean aesthetic, suiting it well. The only downside, as mentioned in previous MagSafe accessories, comes down to its size. The Aplhaplus is probably the largest on this list coming in at a larger size of 2cm adding a way too much bulk to comfortably carry the device and phone at the same time. This is more of a traditional power bank that would be carried separately to your phone and used when needed. Hopefully, in the near future, a company can come along and create a seamless power bank at just a fraction of the size.