Apple’s $19 polishing cloth is backordered until late November—a long wait for a piece of cloth!

Itching to burn $19 on a piece of cloth with an Apple logo stamped on it? Go ahead, we won’t judge you, but be prepared to wait around a month, possibly even more, for your order to ship. Believe it or not, Apple’s latest pricey accessory has been back-ordered until late November!


  • Apple recently launched a polishing cloth, costing $19 a pop
  • The accessory has an Apple logo stamped on it
  • New orders won’t ship before late November

An image of Apple's $29 polishing cloth for cleaning Apple displays and devices
Image by Apple

Why such a long wait time for a $19 towelette?

If you go to the online Apple store and add a $19 Polishing Cloth to your shopping basket, you may be surprised to learn that your order won’t arrive before November 18 to November 24. On top of that, in-store pickup is also unavailable, as MacRumors notes.

That does seem like a pretty long wait time for such a mundane item, no? You’re certainly right about that, but don’t forget we’re living in crazy times when nothing ships on time and everything is late or delayed. Even the textile industry has felt the straining of supply chains around the world caused by the current pandemic so why wouldn’t a piece of branded cloth be hard to produce at scale? Read: How to clean your AirPods Pro ear tips and case

Selling out whatever supply of the product Apple had in stock also doesn’t necessarily mean that people are picking up Apple’s $19 towelette in droves. Quite the contrary, it could mean Apple’s immediate supply of the product was very low. But do you really need this accessory for “safely and effectively” cleaning your Apple devices?

Should you buy Apple’s $19 polishing cloth?

In a word, no.

There’s nothing special about this product in terms of the properties that would make it better than any ordinary lint-free cleaning cloth made from microfiber for cleaning Apple screens. But there’s one exception, as we saw with Apple’s Pro Display XDR where an Apple-made cloth is specifically recommended for cleaning screens that have nano-texture glass.

“To remove dust or smudges from the nano-texture glass screen, use only the polishing cloth that came with your Pro Display XDR or iMac,” notes a support document on the Apple website. To clarify: You’ll get this polishing cloth bundled with your ProDisplay XDR or iMac.

But now, you can also purchase it separately.

And as Apple notes in the description of the product on its online store, the $29 polishing cloth is suitable for cleaning any Apple display, “including nano-texture glass, safely and effectively.” In other words, you’ll only need a $29 polishing cloth from Apple to clean the screen of your Pro Display XDR due to its sensitive nano-texture coating.

And by all means, do go out of your way to avoid using “abrasive cloths, towels, paper towels or similar items” when cleaning your Apple devices.