Why you shouldn’t buy a knock-off iPhone5 Lightning Cable

This has been my dilemma lately. When I had my iPhone 4s, I had tons of spare cables with me–knock-offs, actually. I think 4 or 5–one in the car, one in my purse, another in my office and two more at home. I like keeping many cables since I like the comfort of being able to charge my phone anywhere. When I upgraded to iPhone 5s, I had to let go of all my cables and replace them with Lightning Cables.

The thing is, buying 4-5 original Apple lightning cables would cost you about a hundred dollars–since it’s Php1,090.00 each (USD25.00). So money-wise, it’s more practical to hop over at Greenhills and hoard some cables for only Php150.00-Php200.00 (USD3.00-USD5.00) each… or is it?

In case you didn’t know, Apple’s iOS 7 has done something to detect cheap knockoffs. As it turns out, thereโ€™s a good deal of circuitry inside Apple’s Lightning cable, and all those chips (and licensing fees) donโ€™t come cheap. All the other cheap knock-offs you can buy online or in Greenhills are most likely without this certification. Thus, an annoying error will prompt on your iPhone screen that prevents you from charging your device. Smart move, Apple.

Charging your Apple device with a knock-off can risk your phone’s battery life. It may not charge your phone properly, or may cause short-circuit. There are also cables that would charge your phones but not sync and cables that worked in one orientation but didnโ€™t when plugged in the opposite way.

I have read work-arounds for the annoying “This accessory may not be supported” prompt. But I don’t have the patience to do the work-around every time I would have to charge. I’d rather go to a certified Mac Store and get myself some Apple-certified replacement cables. I’ve seen one in PowerMac Center recently, a non-Apple brand, which costs about Php900.00. So I guess I’m getting that the next time I swing by PowerMac.

Note that many third-party cables are also certified. But keep in mind that they aren’t always as durable. Also, being fatter than Apple’s, they may not fit with most cases (just like the pink knock-off cable in the picture above). Logically, if you buy them in a reputable computer store, and are priced in the range of Php900.00++, they are most likely certified. Then hopefully, they are durable.

UPDATE: I ended up buying Moshi Lightning Cable in Power Mac for only Php900.00 and it works really well. It’s Php90.00 cheaper than the original Apple cable. You can also buy Energizer’s Lightning Cable for Php990.00 at Octagon Megamall.


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7 thoughts on “Why you shouldn’t buy a knock-off iPhone5 Lightning Cable

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