Apple adds to list of products that can interfere with medical devices

Apple warns to keep their products away from medical devices like pacemakers after test found iPhone 12 was able to STOP device responsible for regulating heartbeat

  • Apple has updated the list of products that could interfere with medical devices 
  • Included in the update are versions of AirPods, Apple Watch, HomePod, iPad, iPhone 12, various Macs and Beats headphones 
  • These are products with magnets and electromagnetic fields 
  • They should be kept more than 6 inches away from the device or more than 12 inches if wirelessly charging

Nearly six months after Apple confirmed that the iPhone 12 could interfere with medical devices such as pacemakers, the company has added a large number of its products to the list.

The update, which came over the past few days, is for products with magnets and electromagnetic fields that should be kept ‘a safe distance away from your medical device,’ including devices such as pacemakers and defibrillators.

‘To avoid any potential interactions with these types of medical devices, keep your Apple product a safe distance away from your medical device (more than 6 inches / 15 cm apart or more than 12 inches / 30 cm apart if wirelessly charging),’ Apple wrote in the support update.

‘Consult with your physician and your device manufacturer for specific guidelines.’  

Apple has updated the list of products that can interfere with medical devices such as pacemakers, including Apple Watch

AirPods, HomePod, iPad, iPhone 12, various Macs and Beats headphones are also on the updated list

Here is the full list of products that contain magnets from Apple’s list:

  • AirPods and Charging Case
  • AirPods and Wireless Charging Case
  • AirPods Pro and Wireless Charging Case
  • AirPods Max and Smart Case
  • Apple Watch
  • Apple Watch bands with magnets
  • Apple Watch magnetic charging accessories
  • HomePod
  • HomePod mini
  • iPad
  • iPad mini
  • iPad Air
  • iPad Pro
  • iPad Smart Covers and Smart Folios
  • iPad Smart Keyboard and Smart Keyboard Folio
  • Magic Keyboard for iPad
  • iPhone 12 models
  • MagSafe accessories
  • Mac mini
  • Mac Pro
  • MacBook Air
  • MacBook Pro
  • iMac
  • Apple Pro Display XDR
  • Beats Flex
  • Beats X
  • PowerBeats Pro
  • UrBeats3

Apple added that certain other products from the technology giant could contain magnets, but these are ‘unlikely to interfere with medical devices.’   

This is not a problem that lies just with Apple. Many electronics from other device makers have the same issue with magnetic interference on medical devices, including headphones, other smartwatches or certain cell phones. 

The American Heart Association issued a statement on June 2 noting that magnets in the iPhone 12 can interfere with implanted cardiac devices.

In a small study, 11 of 14 cardiac devices ‘experienced interference’ when an iPhone 12 Max Pro was held close to the device, even if it was still sealed in its original packaging. 

In January, Apple confirmed that the iPhone 12, which features a technology known as MagSafe, has built-in magnets for accessories such as wireless chargers and wallets.    

At the time, Apple said: ‘If you suspect iPhone or any MagSafe accessories are interfering with your medical device, stop using your iPhone or MagSafe accessories.’   

A study published in January in the Heart Rhythm Journal indicated that iPhone 12 models can ‘potentially inhibit lifesaving therapy in a patient’ with implantable medical devices. 

The US study authors had held an iPhone 12 near a patient’s implantable cardioverter defibrillator (ICD), which is used to correct life-threatening cardiac arrhythmias. 

Once the iPhone was brought close to the ICD over the left chest area, the ICD immediately went into a ‘suspended’ state. 

MagSafe was initially introduced in 2006 for Mac laptops – a handy little feature that ensured power connectors stayed attached.

MagSafe connectors were discontinued across Apple’s product lines between 2016 and 2019 and replaced with USB-C.

However, the brand name was brought back for the iPhone 12 to allow rapid 15W wireless charging.

Apple unveils new iPhone 12 with super fast 5G connectivity 

Apple has officially unveiled the new iPhone 12 during a live event that was watched by millions from around the world.

The smartphone is designed with rounded edges that look similar to the iPad Pro and boasts 5G cellular connectivity – the biggest upgrade to the smartphone.

This allows the device to access Verizons 5G ultrawide band, which is the fastest system in the world with over 4 gigabytes per second, according to Apple.

The iPhone 12 also includes a ceramic shield that the firm says is ‘tougher than any smartphone glass.’

The new addition is ‘virtually impervious to heat and electricity’ and makes it more resistant if dropped. 

Along with the iPhone 12, Apple announced three other smartphones including the iPhone 12 Pro, iPhone Pro Max and its all-new iPhone mini with a price tag of $699. 

The tech giant also unleashed its fastest camera into the new lineup.

The dual-lens camera system boasts a 12-megapixel ultra-wide and wide lenses, along with a seven-element lens that improves low-light performance by 27 percent.

Apple is opening pre-orders for the iPhone 12 on October 16, which comes with a price tag of $799 – but devices will not include wall chargers or Lightning EarPods.

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