I took apart another set of Chinese cables with a different design. These are the most salvageable ones for hobbyists. The shielding is nonexistent, so it isn't that hard to get the handle apart, with a little heat.
Removing the chips shows a very old (ca. 2001) Infineon controller that is still being pirated out there (or it could be new old stock) that's worth a few cents, and a unidentified 3 pin component of some sort, a few resistors, and that's it. They have simplified the Apple design to the point where it could easily be built for under 50 cents (whereas the Apple cables were appraised at a considerably higher parts cost.