This post has been updated to include a statement from an Amazon spokesperson.
If you’ve bought a “genuine” Apple charger or cable on Amazon, Apple says there’s a really good chance you bought a counterfeit. Apple has filed a trademark infringement case against the major supplier of those products.
Apple has filed a trademark case against Mobile Star LLC, which Amazon has named as the primary supplier of the counterfeit products, which were sold directly by Amazon, and not a third-party seller. Amazon has since removed the products in question. (Via Patently Apple)
Apple recently purchased a number of Apple power adapters and charging and syncing cables (collectively “power products”) that were directly sold by Amazon.com – not a third party seller – and determined that they were counterfeit. Amazon.com informed Apple that Mobile Star was its source for the majority of these counterfeit Apple products […]
Counterfeit power products, such as those supplied by Mobile Star, pose an immediate threat to consumer safety because, unlike genuine Apple products, they are not subjected to industry-standard consumer safety testing and are poorly constructed with inferior or missing components, flawed design, and inadequate electrical insulation. These counterfeits have the potential to overheat, catch fire, and deliver a deadly electric shock to consumers while in normal use.
Apple says Mobile Star was using its trademark illegally, and the chargers had not passed safety tests, and posed a risk to consumers.
Over the last nine months, Apple, as part of its ongoing brand protection efforts, has purchased well over 100 iPhone devices, Apple power products, and Lightning cables sold as genuine by sellers on Amazon.com and delivered through Amazon’s “Fulfillment by Amazon” program. Apple’s internal examination and testing for these products revealed almost 90% of these products are counterfeit.
Apple says its own reputation is tarnished when consumers purchase what they believe are genuine Apple products and then the products fail to perform as they should, or even worse, prove to be hazardous. The Cupertino firm is asking for an injunction against further sales of the Mobile Star products, as well as destruction of all the counterfeit goods, and damages of $2 million per product type.
An Amazon spokesperson told MacTrast:
“Amazon has zero tolerance for the sale of counterfeits on our site. We work closely with manufacturers and brands, and pursue wrongdoers aggressively.”
There is a lesson to be learned here, and it’s a lesson that is as old as time. If something seems too good to be true, it usually is. When buying “genuine” iPhone, iPad, and Mac chargers and accessories, if the price is way below retail, take a closer look.