Review: Just Mobile AluCable, AluCable Mini + AluCable Twist Lightning Cables
Development may have taken longer than users were expecting, but Just Mobile's Lightning cables are finally here. There are three variations available: the standard 1.5-meter long AluCable ($25), a compact 10-centimeter AluCable Mini ($20), and the coiled 1.8-meter AluCable Twist ($25), which shrinks to a shorter length as needed. All three have the same basic black rubber cord design, and silver aluminum housings around the USB and Lightning plugs. Notably, the Lightning connector has a particularly wide sheathe, which may result in compatibility issues with some cases; it was just able to fit in Speck's CandyShells without issues. Undoubtedly though, they're great-looking cables.
Whether you choose AluCable, AluCable Mini, or AluCable Twist, you’re getting the same connectors—the only difference between them is the length and shape of the cord in the middle. Naturally, the shortest is AluCable Mini, which is right-sized for laptop use. The regular AluCable is better suited for circumstances where you need to be further away from a computer or outlet, and AluCable Twist makes the most sense in the car, or other places where it’s important to not have cabling strewn about. Not surprisingly, the cables all work: plug them in, and you’ll be able to charge from an adapter, or sync to a computer.
The aluminum around the plugs at either end is silver, and perfectly matches Macs. Both ends are wide, but it’s the Lightning end that could pose something of an issue with certain protective cases. Apple designates a “keep away zone” around the Lightning port, designating how large the opening should be. With cases made by companies that chose to go smaller, the various AluCables and their 0.5” wide plugs simply won’t fit.
Are premium cables necessary for anything more than looks? No, they’re not. But with its AluCables, Just Mobile has added a real touch of class to typical Lightning cables, without a crazy increase in price. Compared to Apple’s half-meter and one-meter Lightning to USB Cables, all three are in the same price range, and the longer two are actually less expensive than Apple’s recently-introduced two-meter version. We can generally recommend all three cables, as they offer flair along with basic functionality. For most users, more affordable cables will get same the job done, but picking one of these up certainly isn’t a bad choice.