Apple MFi Certified: All You Need to Know About MFi Certified Accessories

Wondering whether the Lightning accessories you have just bought are really Apple MFi certified? Dive into this article to find out the easiest ways to know if a Lightning cable is certified or fake!


Cheap and counterfeit Apple accessories are flooded in the market. While the fake power accessories may seem to be great deals due to the low price, they can potentially damage your expensive device like iPhone and may even put your life at risk. Thankfully, finding the Apple MFi certified cables are dead simple–if only you are not in a hurry!

Known to take safety and security extremely seriously, Apple offers a licensing program called MFi. Unfortunately, very few accessory makers (less than 10%) comply with the Licensing program, while most sell counterfeit Lightning cables. Considering the damaging effects of the fake chargers; it’s better to know if the accessories are MFi certified. Read on to find the noticeable differences!

How to Know If The Accessory Apple MFi Certified or Not?

Quick navigation:

What does MFi certified means? A Little Brush With History

MFi stands for “Made for iPhone/iPod/iPad.” Apple introduced “Made for iPad” at Macworld Expo on 11 January 2005. With the introduction of the Lightning connector (September 12, 2012), Apple revamped the name as MFi.

It is meant for the hardware and software developers which offerings work with Apple devices. The tech giant charges round about $4 royalty for each connector.

The licensing program now also includes AirPlay (formerly known as AirTunes), which allows users to stream content wirelessly.

Moreover, the developers who create apps and accessories for HomeKit must have to be part of this program as well.

What is MFi chip? How Do Apple Certified Accessories Work with iDevices

Apple-approved accessories come with a built-in MFi chip. What is it and how does it work?

It’s basically an authentication chip that enables the compatible accessories to communicate with Apple devices. As a result, they are able to play perfectly with the iDevices and also carry out tasks like charging and syncing data without any issue.

Why my iPhone or iPad is saying “this accessory is not certified?”

iPhone and iPad are designed to quickly figure out the fake chargers. That’s why they alert you with a warning message, “This accessory is not certified?” It’s one of the simplest ways to nab a counterfeit accessory.

However, in some cases, you might see this alert even when you have a certified cable. It might be due to damage or lint particles that might have sneaked into the Lightning port. To get to know more about this error message, head over to this post.

How to tell if your Apple lightning cable is fake?

You can easily identify an uncertified Lightning accessory by taking a close look at some of the basic symptoms.

  • The connector: It might not properly connect to your device and fall off.
  • Overheating: If you are using a flawed product, its connector may get hot very quickly.
  • Slow charging: Your iOS device will charge rather slowly.
  • Syncing issue: You won’t be able to sync your device with the computer.

Before Buying Any Accessory, Make Sure to Check Out the Apple MFi Badge

Before buying any Lightning cable or accessory, make sure to check out the MFi badge. Just a look at the packaging or the writing on the cable can save your day!

Apple MFi certified accessories will have MFi logo on Package
Image Credit: Apple

Some accessories might have a previous version of the MFi badge:

Previous version of the Apple MFi badge
Image Credit: Apple

An Apple-approved accessory will have a “Designed by Apple in California” and either “Assembled in China,” or “Indústria Brasileira” or “Assembled in Vietnam.”

Apple has certified and that come with writing on the cable
Image Credit: Apple

Besides, the cable may also have a 12-digit serial number. So, the next time you want to get one for your device, do not fail to check out these logos.

One thing worth noting is that you won’t see the MFi logo on USB-C to Lightning cables.

Generally, Apple-approved cables will feature single-piece, smooth, rounded and gold/silver-colored contacts. However, the counterfeit cables’ connector will have more one piece and sport inconsistent or rough finish.

Compare of certified Apple accessories and counterfeit or uncertified Lightning accessories
Image Credit: Apple

Having researched a number of fake cables, Apple has made an extensive post about how to spot an uncertified cable. Jump over to the article to read more.

Avoid buying a super cheap cable

As mentioned above, Apple charges a flat royalty fee around $4 per connector. So, a fully compatible accessory shouldn’t be less than $6. Therefore, if you come across a power accessory which price seems to be too low, avoid it.

Most of the times, the low price may itself help you figure out whether the Lightning cable is fake or certified.

What Are The Best Lightning Cables?

Third-Party MFi certified Lightning cables

There are some well-known accessory makers like Belkin, Anker, and Griffin that produce top-notch Lightning cables. Of course, their products are a bit expensive, but if you want to have high quality along with trusted safeguard, their offerings are worth serious consideration.

To help you easily discover a top-grade cable, we’ve listed out the best options. So, check out this post to explore them.

How to Find the List of Apple MFi Certified Accessories

What if you have come across an unknown accessory maker that claims to offer the certified product, how would figure out whether it’s real or fake? Pretty simple! Apple has made it quite straightforward to know which accessory brand is MFi certified.

To do so, all you need to do is head over to Apple MFi website → click on the Search Criteria drop-down menu → select brand → enter the brand name and hit Search.

If it’s a certified brand, the website will show its available accessories. If it’s not approved, it won’t offer any result.

Find List of MFi Certified Accessories

There you go!

Signing Off…

Assuming, you will now be able to spot a fake Lightning accessory quickly. Keep in mind the above points to ensure you never end up with a bid charger that might irreparably damage your device or even endanger your life.

You might want to explore the following posts as well:

Like this article? Give a shot to our app and stay in touch with us via multiple channels like Facebook, Twitter, and Telegram to keep track of our posts with ease.