Temu vs Amazon: Which Shopping Site Is Best for Your Shopping Needs?

8 minutes, 36 seconds Read

Screenshots of Temu and Amazon on the App Store

Jada Jones/ZDNet

If you’re even a casual online shopping fan, you’ve placed a lot of orders on Amazon. If you’re downright passionate about online shopping, you’re probably familiar with Temu, a digital marketplace for low-cost products.

Also: Is it time to legalize? What to know before you place an order

If you’ve been paying close attention, you’ve noticed that some products are on the amazon There is also Temu. And if you’re a savvy shopper looking to order holiday gifts, you might be wondering: Which online marketplace is best?

Here are some guidelines to consider when deciding whether to buy something from Amazon or Temu.

You should buy from Temu if…

Temu phone screenshot

Screenshot by Jada Jones/ZdNet

1. You’re looking for tech accessories

Many people have smartphones, headphones, laptops and smartwatches in their daily use. Many like to personalize those products with cases, stickers, wristbands, phone stands and other accessories.

Also: 5 tech gadgets I never leave home without

If you frequently change your phone case or smartwatch band, buying multiple Otterbox phone cases or Apple-branded Apple Watch bands can be an expensive luxury. While you should at least invest in a hard case or accessory, experimenting with colorful accessories can be a fun way to express yourself with your device.

Most people go to Amazon to find a wider assortment of accessories than they find in the tech section of big box stores like Walmart, Target, or Best Buy. But Temu has a wider assortment of tech accessories than Amazon.

Also: Best Early Black Friday Deals Under $100

You can find all kinds of tech accessories on Temu, and sometimes you’ll see the same stuff advertised on Amazon. However, in Temu, you will find them much cheaper. You must buy at least $10 worth of items (that’s about four iPhone cases, based on Temu pricing), and then you’re guaranteed free shipping.

I purchased cases for my iPhone 14, MacBook Air, and AirPods Pro at Temu and was unhappy with two of the nine iPhone cases I purchased. Temu also has more cases that protect the bezels around the iPhone camera, an area that most Amazon iPhone cases leave unprotected.

iPhone 14 case and AirPods Pro case from Temu

My favorite iPhone 14 and AirPods Pro (2nd gen) cases I bought from Temu.

Jada Jones/ZDNet

Temu has thousands of AirPods Pro cases to choose from, from clear cases and cute character cases to cases that look like miniature vaseline pots.

My colleague, David Gewartz, bought some non-tech products from Temu and was pleasantly surprised by what he found. David also offers some buying tips, so be sure to check out his article.

I do not recommend any charging station or cord from Temu for Apple devices. I like to stick to accessories that don’t charge or interfere with my phone or AirPods batteries because I don’t want to risk damaging them with faulty charging accessories. Temu may have third-party chargers that won’t harm your device’s battery, but I don’t want to risk it.

Also: The best early Black Friday Apple deals of 2023

If you buy third-party lighting or USB-C charging cables, or MagSafe 3-in-1 charging stations, you need to make sure they have a “Made for Apple” label.

This label means the manufacturer has gone the extra mile to ensure their third-party charging accessories are certified by Apple and safe for your device. you can Search Apple’s database That’s why brands make products that get the “Made for Apple” label You can also check out ZDNET’s list of the best USB-C chargers, which includes cables certified by Apple.

If you have an Android phone, you should check your phone’s charging standard, which you can find online in your smartphone manufacturer’s official device spec sheet. Most Android phones use the USB-PD charging standard, so most third-party chargers should work fine as long as their wattage is compatible with your smartphone.

2.You can wait several weeks for your item

Many of Temu’s items come from China, which means US buyers will have to wait about 10 days from purchase to receive their Temu packages.

Sometimes, items will arrive early; Other times, they’ll show up at your doorstep at the last minute. So, if you’re pinched for time, I wouldn’t recommend buying from Temu.

Also: 5 Ways Google Can Help You Score Deals This Holiday Season

I’ll give you a scenario: A few months ago, someone stole my iPhone 11. Surprisingly, I went to the Apple Store to buy a replacement. I was desperate for a case for my new phone, but I couldn’t wait 10 days for the phone cases I bought from Temu later that day.

So, I sent a case from Amazon to get some protection for my phone until my case from Temu arrived. I received my Otterbox from Amazon in two days, but I don’t plan on buying another case from anywhere other than Temu.

3. You want to experiment with “dupes”.

There are many lookalike products or “dupes” on the Temur platform. But if you see People are reviewing “AirPod Max from Temu” onlineThey may look like AirPods Max, but the seller can’t advertise them as real AirPods Max.

Most of the products you see on Temu resemble authentic, name-brand technology products. no no When I reviewed some HP and Lenovo products from Temu in June, an HP representative told me that the company could not verify whether the HP products on Temu were “from authorized resellers or genuine HP devices.”

Also: I bought 4 brand-name tech gadgets at Temu for work. Here’s how it went

Since that time, all devices advertised as Temu HP products are no longer available on the site.

That said, some tech products on Temu will work with your device. “AirPods Max“You can connect to your device and sound decent as you see in Temu, but you’ll miss out on a lot of real-world features and they may not give you longevity.

So, if you’re okay with trying your luck at Temu dupes and want a pair of “AirPods Max” for just $11, then Temu is your place.

Temu logo on the phone with Pinduoduo logo in the background

Shop at Temu


Temu is an online megastore that offers everything from car accessories to small kitchen appliances and everything in between.

You should buy from Amazon if…

Screenshot of the Amazon Renewed landing page

Screenshot by Jada Jones/ZdNet

1. You’re a last-minute gift-giver

If you are a Amazon Prime account (These days, who doesn’t?), your items are eligible for same-day, one-day, and two-day shipping. If you’re buying a last-minute gift for a friend’s birthday or anniversary, your best bet — aside from visiting a physical store — is to order from Amazon with Prime shipping.

Also: 10 Best Tech Gifts of 2023

Still, even without a Prime membership, Amazon boasts fast shipping times. All Amazon customers can expect most items to arrive within four to five business days. So, even if you’re a week away from giving your gift, you’ll get it faster from Temu on Amazon.

However, if you are not a Prime member, you must purchase at least $35 worth of products to qualify for Amazon’s free shipping.

2. You are looking for reliable technology

If you want to buy a reputable piece of technology, choose Amazon. Whether you’re buying refurbished or brand new technology, Amazon is a reliable seller.

Amazon has an extensive open-box policy, and Amazon Renewal Products are tested, inspected and given a rating and price based on their condition. For example, a brand new 2022 13-inch MacBook Air with an M2 chip, 10-core GPU, 8GB of RAM and 512GB SSD costs $1,299 at Apple.

Also: Every holiday return policy from Amazon, Walmart, Target and more

Amazon renewed the same laptop for $979 And in excellent condition, meaning no scratches on the screen and no signs of significant cosmetic damage to the body. The refurbished MacBook Air comes with the same accessories as the brand new MacBook Air.

Brand-new technology is often sold on Amazon, and refurbished technology can be returned and refunded within 90 days of purchase.

3. You want easy returns

Most items on Amazon can be returned within 30 days of receipt. Temu has forgiveness though 90 day return policyReturning items to Amazon is much more convenient

Also: Amazon’s holiday gift to you: Increased returns signal the start of the shopping season

You can return items purchased from Amazon at a Amazon Hub Locker in your area, or you can drop off your returned items at your nearest UPS store, Kohl’s, Whole Foods, Staples or Amazon store. You don’t have to worry about printing labels or shipping boxes, because Amazon will provide you with a QR code to present to the attendant at the return location.

After you scan the QR code, you give your items to the attendant and soon you get one back.

Amazon logo on the phone

Shop on Amazon

the amazon

Amazon is an online marketplace that offers customers fast shipping and low prices.

ZDNET’s buying advice

Bottom line: If you’re looking for legitimate, name-brand products, consult Amazon. However, Temu holds the crown in the tech accessories category.

Recently, people Temuke took to TikTok to complain about stealing their payment information After finding withdrawal of funds from their bank accounts. Amazon, meanwhile, has had its fair share Payment scam. I’ve never encountered this problem, probably because I’ve never provided an online retailer with my debit card information.

Also: How to use Apple Pay in stores and online

I recommend never using your debit card when completing transactions online. Instead, you can buy a Visa or Amazon gift card, load money on it and use it. Or, you can use Apple Pay or PayPal on Temu, which are less likely to be hacked. If the gift card method doesn’t work I recommend using Apple Pay or PayPal from any online store.

Apple Pay does not store your card information On Apple’s servers, and PayPal offers $0 liability Your bank account is charged for items you didn’t purchase. Hacking a gift card is complicated for bad actors, and should they succeed, they won’t be able to access the funds in your bank account.

Happy shopping!

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