Update: They are back

U.S. online retailing giant Amazon sells its own line of “Basics” products that features cheap re-branded accessories for electronics. At first glance, they appear to be mostly OEMed from Asia and include rechargeable batteries, cables, cases, and other accessories you might purchase alongside electronics.

Earlier this week, Amazon began selling ‘Basics’ Lightning cables for use with Apple’s new iPhone 5, iPad mini, and fourth-generation iPad for $14.99. But, today, something strange happened…

Screen Shot 2012-12-27 at 9.29.13 AM

Yesterday, the company pulled its own Amazon Basics Lightning cables from the U.S. market. When I say ‘pulled’, I mean they aren’t ‘out of stock’ or to be delivered at a later date (which Amazon typically does when it runs out of a product). Amazon pulled the whole (currently 404’ing) URL, but you can still see links to the URL when you visit other Lightning cable pages.

A few 9to5Mac readers were able to actually purchase these cables before they were pulled.


Amazon Basics Lightning cables are still available internationally as of this writing, so the move is very curious. Did Apple have them pulled in the U.S.? Perhaps they weren’t working properly, so Amazon stopped selling them in the U.S.? In each case, why would they continue to be available internationally? We reached out to both companies for clarification.

Amazon currently sells Apple’s own Lightning cables and what appear to be MFi-licensed cables, but it only sells cheap and likely unlicensed third-party Lightning cables through its third-party reseller program. These cables get satisfactory reviews and start at just $2.55 shipped.

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