Apple’s $19 Polishing Cloth Is Pushing the Envelope of Innovation

BY Chandraveer Mathur

Published 20 Oct 2021

At the “Unleashed” event, Apple said the new MacBook Pro won’t need an adapter to enhance connectivity. That doesn’t mean it’s going to stop selling stupidly overpriced accessories. The Apple Store now lists a Polishing Cloth accessory for cleaning screens, priced at $19.

Yes, you read that right. $19 for a microfiber cleaning cloth that’s around the size of a tea coaster. This is the proverbial “one more thing” Steve Jobs would have mentioned, had he stuck around to witness this level of consumerism. The iPhone maker’s compatibility list for this accessory is probably the largest one yet since the cloth can wipe every Apple device with a screen. That said, the company is demanding a premium because the cloth can clean Apple’s nano-texture glass safely. The company does advise users to clean the Pro Display XDR and 27-inch iMac’s nano-texture glass display with care.

The Polishing Cloth accessory made its debut alongside the AirPods 3, new HomePod mini color options, and new MacBook Pro variants. Unfortunately, the Polishing Cloth doesn’t ship with any of the products Apple released at its “Unleashed” event.

The new product and its price have kicked up a storm of memes on Twitter. Here’s a curated selection:

Our Take

While the delivery date for the Polishing Cloth accessory has already been pushed to November-end in some regions, allow us a moment while we reminisce about the good old days when the iPhone shipped with a cleaning cloth in the box and Apple wasn’t going for our wallet’s jugular.