It’s no secret that you pay a premium for most of Apple’s products. From Macbooks, iPhones, Mac Pros, iPads to Apple Accesories; there’s a good reason why Apple is the world’s first $1 Trillion Dollar Company. It is easy to take the cynical answer and assume that Apple like any other privately owned company would want to maximise profit from selling accessories. There is good evidence for this, afterall, Apple was the first company to remove the headphone jack and replace all of its ports on its macbooks and replace them with USB-C ports so people would need to buy more dongles. In addition to this, these accessories have to be MFi certified if you want them to work properly.
This is turn raises the prices across the board as all accessories such as lightning cables have to be MFi certified if you want to it to work perfectly with an Apple device. This is in contrast to Android devices that mostly use either USB C or Mirco USB cables. At times, a MFi certified lighting cable can cost as much as 4.2 times the Android USB-C equivalent.
What is Apple MFi?
Essentially, the Apple MFi is a license or certification obtained from Apple (Apple Inc.) to demonstrate that a product has met Apple’s standards. MFi stands for Made for iPod, Made For iPhone and Made for iPad. The picture above is the updated logo for MFi products so keep a lookout for this logo when you buy any Apple Accessories.
Only manufacturers that obtain this license are able to print this log on their products. However, it is not easy to get this certification. It is estimated that only about 5% of manufacturers are able to comply with the strict regulations Apple sets for use of the Apple MFi logo.
This is done in part to protect the Apple brand by ensuring that is product life cycle lives up to the Apple brand. To Apple, products that have the MFi logo are seen to be almost the same as Apple products in terms of the design and quality of the accessories. The license is only granted by Apple after passing a myriad of tests. Thus, getting the MFi license is similar to getting a royal seal of approval from Apple.
Moreover, Apple mandates that all accessories sold by authorised resellers of Apple products need to be MFi certified. Otherwise, Apple might not honour the warranty if they find out that the damage done to your device is due to use of a non MFi certified product.
In practical terms, using non MFi products and cables do not transfer and charge as well.
You also risk damaging your $2000 plus dollar phone, your warranty may not be honoured if Apple finds out you used a non MFi device. According to Apple warranty information page for Singapore:
This Warranty does not apply: (a) to consumable parts, such as batteries or protective coatings that are designed to diminish over time, unless failure has occurred due to a defect in materials or workmanship; (b) to cosmetic damage, including but not limited to scratches, dents and broken plastic on ports unless failure has occurred due to a defect in materials or workmanship; (c) to damage caused by use with a third party component or product that does not meet the Apple Product’s specifications.
Naturally, this MFi certification comes at a premium. If you were to compare the two cables above, you would think that they are very similar. Both transfer data and charge phones, and both are made of high quality materials and posses a similar pleasing minimalist aesthetic. However, the Apple Cable costs about four times as much due to the costs incurred from attaining the certification. This means that you can buy four USB C Fast Charging Cables or Micro USB Fast Charging Cables for the price of 1 Apple MFi certified cable. Although the MFi cable might be just that bit better in terms of quality, the functionality of the cables and the sheer quantity you can buy does not justify the premium in my book.
In this case, paying the Apple premium can be justified to protect your investment. You may also really enjoy the seamlessness of the Apple ecosystem and the quality support that they provide.
But at the end of the day, it is really down to what works for you and if you think that you are getting enough value works for you. But you’ll be glad to know that regardless of whether you are in the confines & protection of the Apple camp or prefer the freedom of the Android camp; IUIGA has you covered. Check out the affordable yet high quality cables we have on sale.