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For those with weak hearts, Apple iPhone 12 can be dangerous due to its magnets

A recent support document released by Apple has warned users against keeping iPhone12 and MagSafe accessories too close to pacemakers, defibrillators due to magnets and radios in the devices.

twitter-logoYasmin Ahmed | January 25, 2021 | Updated 12:48 IST

Highlights

  • Apple notes that users with heart conditions should not keep iPhone 12 models too close to medical devices like a pacemaker or defibrillator.
  • It also notes that iPhone and MagSafe accessories should be charged at a safe distance of 6 inches or 15 cm apart and 12 inches or 30 cm apart if wirelessly charging.
  • The move comes after a health paper stated concerns about magnets in iPhone 12 interfering with medical devices if they are kept close.

If you are an iPhone 12 user with a heart condition, you should avoid keeping the device in your upper pocket and also keep the iPhone 12 and MagSafe accessories at a safe distance while charging them. Apple recently released a support document that warns users with heart conditions stating that they could be at risk if they keep the current iPhone 12 models too close to medical devices. Apple notes that the iPhone 12 models contain more magnets than prior iPhone models. Apple says that users with heart conditions should keep the iPhone and MagSafe accessories at a safe distance of 6 inches or 15 cm apart and 12 inches or 30 cm apart if wirelessly charging.

The move comes after a health paper released a public health issue concerning the newer generation iPhone 12. The paper stated that keeping iPhone 12 particularly in the upper packers could potentially inhibit lifesaving therapy in a patient. Engadget cited the paper from Heart Rhythm that raised concerns "for possible device-device interaction due to presence of a strong magnetic array in the iPhone and MagSafe compatible cases."

The paper notes that the iPhone 12 series has a circular array of magnets around a central charging coil for the phone to be compatible with MagSafe accessories. It notes that MagSafe contains a magnetometer and single-coil Near Field Communications (NFC) reader. It further explains that these magnets then help in aligning the iPhone on a wireless charger and other peripheral accessories and increases wireless charging speeds up to 15 Watts.

Apple in its support page notes that even though all iPhone 12 models contain more magnets than prior iPhone models, they are not expected to pose a greater risk of magnetic interference to medical devices than prior iPhone models. "Medical devices such as implanted pacemakers and defibrillators might contain sensors that respond to magnets and radios when in close contact," Apple noted. Apple also advises users to consult without their physician and the device manufacturer for specific guidelines.

Earlier this year, Apple announced that the entire iPhone 12 lineup would not include EarPods or a power adapter in the box. However, buyers will only get a USB-C to Lightning cable. Apple stated that it did not chargers or EarPods with the iPhone 12 line-up due to environmental reasons.

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