How do I know if my iPhone is genuine?

Have you ever come across a fake iPhone when you are eager to buy a used iPhone? If not, then you are very lucky as there is a good part of the market that deals with a cheap imitation iPhone. In the old days, it was very easy to differentiate between real and fake.

However, with technological advancement, the makers of these iPhones have mastered iPhone cloning. Whether it’s the look, the size, the button placement or the Apple logo, every detail has been copied so meticulously, it’s very difficult to tell apart.

Despite that, you don’t have to worry. That being said, there are many indicators that allow you to check whether the iPhone you want to buy is real or fake. In this article, we are going to introduce you to some of the indicators and ways to find out if the iPhone you are buying is real or fake.

How do I know if my iPhone is genuine?

You can check if your iPhone is real or fake, from 3 parameters: performance, physical and system indicators. Follow the reading below, and understand how to make the identification:

1. Performance Indicators

Source: Oficina da Net; Photographer: Nicolas Muller

The intention to buy an iPhone at a cheaper price can lead you to a counterfeit iPhone. And it will probably have performance issues. Let’s look at the signs below:

A. Multitasking

The fake iPhone would have trouble handling multitasking. To test the device, try opening the Music app, and playing your favorite music in the background.

Then, go to any other application, such as opening the internet browser, and observe the smartphone’s performance. If your iPhone is fake, it won’t be able to handle two or more than two apps at the same time. It can even crash and stop working.

B. Camera Quality

Another indicator that you check is the iPhone camera. In short, Apple is known for its quality and perfect lighting present in the photos it takes. However, fake iPhones have poor lighting and blurry photos. Despite the light and environment, photos taken from fake iPhones can be bad.

C. Switch between application screens

Scroll right and left from the home screen. With fake iPhone, you won’t be able to switch between screens easily. On the other hand, when the iPhone is real, it does the job without any major problems.

2. Physical Indicators

Photos: Oficina da Net.
Source: Oficina da Net; Photographer: Nicolas Muller

After checking the performance, it’s time to analyze the physical indicators to see if the iPhone is real:

A. Watch out for screws

The iPhone comes with pentalobe security screws. However, fake iPhones have crossed screws. Pentalobe security screws have 5 lobes for a foolproof system. This is one of the best ways to detect if your iPhone is real.

B. Check iPhone screen

The iPhone screen is crystal clear and doesn’t get pixelated. The iPhone screen also has a retina display with high pixel density, which makes the screen look alive. On the other hand, the fake iPhone has an opaque screen, with low density and a much lower quality compared to the original.

C. Apple logo

The iPhone logo is one of the features that makes it different from other smartphone companies. Look for the logo, if it’s not on your iPhone then it’s fake. However, some fake iPhones may have a logo as well, but you can identify whether it is fake or not. Rub your finger over the Apple logo, if you can detect a transition from the phone cover to the Apple logo then it’s a scam.

D. Check physical buttons

Another significant thing is to check the buttons on the iPhone. The Volume buttons on the left side of the iPhone with the +/- button just above it, the Power button on the other side are the ones present. If you find any changes in the position of the buttons or if one of them is missing, then you are dealing with fake iPhone.

Also, it is worth mentioning that some fake iPhones have all the buttons in place. However, if you’re familiar with the original iPhone lineup, you’ll notice the difference by tapping the buttons on the fake iPhone. This is said as they lose their smooth fit, or even may be loose.

E. Home Screen

If the appearance cannot determine whether the iPhone is genuine or fake, then turn off the iPhone and restart it. In short, the fake iPhone will start with the word “Welcome” on the screen, while as you know, the iPhone starts with the Apple logo. You can also check the App Store icon to make sure it takes you to the iOS store.

F. Used SIM cards

As you know, the iPhone can only work with a single SIM up to the iPhone 12 version. Therefore, the phone dealer boast that you can use two SIMs in your iPhone, so this is a sign that it is fake. Also, the real iPhone comes with a sticker that says Designed by Apple California and Assembled in China.

It is only from the iPhone 13 that the Dual SIM option was included. That is, you can use two carrier chips: one physical (nano-SIM), and another embedded in the device (eSIM). Furthermore, from 13 onwards, it is also possible to activate two eSIMs at the same time, without needing the physical SIM.

3. System Indicators

Photo: Oficina da Net.
Source: Oficina da Net; Photographer: Nicolas Muller

There are some system indicators too to check if the iPhone you are using is real or fake. Let’s check them out below:

A. How to Check if iPhone was Stolen with Serial Number

Open the dialer and dial the code *#06# to get your iPhone’s serial number. You can also check the serial number under Settings. To do so, follow these steps:

  1. Access the Settings from your iPhone’s home screen;
  2. Then tap General;
  3. After that, tap About;
  4. Scroll down to get the serial number;
  5. Once this is done, go to Apple’s website to verify that your iPhone is real;
  6. Enter the serial number and if it says the code is invalid then your iPhone is fake.

B. Siri

Siri is the iPhone’s digital assistant. It won’t work on fake iPhone. So, if you try to press the Home button, or just call the assistant and it doesn’t respond, it means the iPhone is not real.

C. Memory capacity

In short, new iPhones usually come with 64GB, 128GB, 256GB and 512GB options. Meanwhile, the old ones come in 8GB (iPhone 5C only), 16GB, 32GB and 64GB variants.

If this iPhone has a memory card slot to expand the capacity, the phone is fake. This is said because the reals cannot be expanded. So if the iPhone you’re looking at comes with a memory card slot, then you’re dealing with a counterfeit.

D. Connect to iTunes

Connect your iPhone to your computer and sync it to iTunes. If you are unable to connect it, and iTunes does not recognize your phone; then you have a fake iPhone in hand.

E. Operating System

If the device has any app other than iOS then it is definitely fake. Also, check built-in apps. The original iPhone comes with built-in iOS apps like Calculator, Photos, Settings and Music. If any of the apps are not there then the phone may have been changed. In that case, you can restore iPhone, and check whether it is fake or not.

the price is low

Finally, if you have your eye on an iPhone that is priced far below the market, it’s good to keep an eye out: it can be counterfeited. In this case, perform all the procedures mentioned above, to find out if the device is in fact original or not.

Furthermore, if you are still confused about the originality of the device, the tip is to take it to the Apple store. There, they will be able to verify if the device is genuine or modified.

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