More on the mysterious MagSafe connector

Summary:I mentioned in my posting yesterday that Apple's new MagSafe power connector is both an asset and a liability. Today I want to look at its patent status...

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I mentioned in my posting yesterday that Apple's new MagSafe power connector is both an asset and a liability.

There was a piece on the Japanese Mac Treasure Tracing Club Web site on 26 February 2006 that stated "Because Apple acquired a patent for MagSafe, third party manufacturers cannot sell an adapter with with such a connector." It also goes on to say that Apple is not going to give permission to do so.

Ironically the breakaway power cord standard was developed years ago by Underwriters Laboratories for use on chocolate fondue fountains and countertop deep fryers.

I think that there's a good chance that Apple may "bless" a particular manufacturer with the rights to make a MagSafe car/airline adapter at some point (as they have done with Griffin Technologies and other third party developers on iPod projects in the past). A potential candidate could be Kensington as they make a 120W adapter for notebooks now.

I'm even more interested to see if the upcoming consumer "MacBook" will share the same giant brick as the MacBook Pro

So how many extra 85W MagSafe power adapters and MBP batteries did you buy?

Topics: Apple

About

Jason D. O'Grady developed an affinity for Apple computers after using the original Lisa, and this affinity turned into a bona-fide obsession when he got the original 128 KB Macintosh in 1984. He started writing one of the first Web sites about Apple (O'Grady's PowerPage) in 1995 and is considered to be one of the fathers of blogging.... Full Bio

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