Apple Cautions Against Placing iPhone 12 Near Pacemakers

Anyone equipped with a pacemaker or implantable cardioverter-defibrillator (ICD) probably already knows the potential dangers of getting close to a strong magnet.

Even so, anxious to protect its customers and avoid ghastly headlines related to its products, Apple cautions those with an iPhone 12 and MagSafe accessories to keep them away from certain medical implants. This is because the iPhone 12 includes magnets as part of its new MagSafe feature (the iPhone 12 includes more magnets than previous models), as well as components and radios that emit electromagnetic fields. MagSafe accessories also contain magnets, while the MagSafe charger and MagSafe Duo charger also contain radios.

Apple already had an informational page on its online support section on the matter, but MacRumors recently discovered that the tech giant added new text to further clarify the issue.

“Medical devices such as implanted cardiac pacemakers and defibrillators can contain sensors that react to magnets and radios when in close contact,” says the added text. “To avoid possible interactions with these devices, keep your iPhone and MagSafe accessories a safe distance from your device (more than 6 inches apart or more than 12 inches apart if you’re charging wirelessly).”

While Apple insists that the iPhone 12 “is not likely to pose a higher risk of magnetic interference with medical devices than previous iPhone models,” a study recently published by the Heart Rhythm Journal found that the new Apple phone could actually interfere with an ICD when the two devices are in close proximity.

For those with an implanted medical device, the bottom line is that if you have any doubts about how it might be affected by outside forces, Apple recommends speaking to your doctor and medical device manufacturer to see if you need to wait a distance between yours medical device and your iPhone or MagSafe accessories. The tech giant adds, “If you suspect the iPhone or MagSafe accessory is interfering with your medical device, stop using your iPhone or MagSafe accessory.”

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