How to Tell if AirPods Are Fake or Real: 6 Tested & Proven Methods
Learn to distinguish between Fake AirPods vs. Real ones with our six proven methods. Avoid the risk of exploding knock-offs and help Apple’s $3.2 billion loss. This article has researched and compiled six practical ways to authenticate your AirPods. Don’t be fooled by fake versions that pass serial number checks and mimic exclusive features. Read on to find out how to identify genuine AirPods through scrutiny and Apple’s new features. If you’re interested in AirPods, here are some Best Earbuds For iPhones to check out.
1. Detect Fake AirPods VS Real With iOS Devices
To test this feature, place your AirPods near your iOS device with Bluetooth turned on after opening the lid. However, it’s important to note that this feature only verifies the authenticity of your AirPods and doesn’t prevent you from pairing a counterfeit pair with your iOS device. It also alerts users that fake AirPods may not function as effectively as genuine ones.
2. Use iOS Features
AirPods boast unique features that leverage Apple’s software capabilities, setting them apart from their counterfeit versions. These exclusive Apple-only features serve as a valuable indicator to authenticate your AirPods.
Learn how to verify the authenticity of your AirPods through software with these steps:
Use Find My app
Created by Apple, Find My is a service that empowers users to track the whereabouts of their misplaced or lost devices, which can be accessed via the mobile app or iCloud website.
Losing a pair of AirPods can be distressing, regardless of whether they are genuine. However, the key difference is that if you own genuine AirPods, the Find My app can help locate them, while fake AirPods are likely to be irretrievable.
Once you connect the original AirPods to an iOS device, they will automatically integrate with your Find My account. As a result, you can access all of the platform’s features, including Play Sound and Directions, with genuine AirPods.
Examine the information on the ‘i’ icon.
By clicking on the More Info or ‘i’ button next to your devices, you can verify whether they are genuine Apple products or third-party Bluetooth devices. Here’s how to access the More Info screen on your iOS device:
- Go to the Settings icon
- Tap on Bluetooth
- Click on the circular blue icon bearing an ‘i’ adjacent to your AirPods or AirPods Pro: The More Info button for authentic AirPods will reveal the model number, serial number, firmware version, and additional information. In contrast, the More Info screen for counterfeit AirPods will resemble that of other Bluetooth devices, showing only the name, basic device information, and ‘Forget this Device’ option.
3. Determine The Fake AirPods VS Real by Examining Their Serial Number
In cases where you don’t have the luxury of time to verify the legitimacy of AirPods through software, you can resort to other methods, such as checking their serial number. This is particularly useful when purchasing from third-party sellers.
Apple utilizes the serial number to monitor specific units in their inventory. Furthermore, Apple also employs serial numbers to recognize defective batches. From the user’s perspective, the serial number indicates that the product was manufactured by Apple and not by any other company.
Where can you find the serial number on AirPods?
The following is the location of your AirPods’ serial number:
- If you are using iOS or iPadOS, you can locate the serial number of your AirPods by tapping on the More Info button in your Bluetooth Settings. After clicking on the ‘i’ icon, the model number, serial number, and version of authentic AirPods Pro will be displayed.
- If you have the original case for your AirPods or AirPods Pro, you can find the same serial number as your AirPods on the underside of the flip-open lid. The serial number for AirPods Pro can be found inside the charging case.
- To locate the serial number of AirPods Max, remove the left ear cushion and check underneath where you can find the Apple logo and speaker holes, and the serial number will be displayed next to it. According to Apple, you can find the serial number of AirPods Max near the speaker holes.
- If you have the genuine box for your AirPods, you can find the serial number on the barcode at the back. It’s essential to ensure that this serial number matches the one inside the charging case’s lid—AirPods Pro Serial number location on its box.
How to verify the genuineness of AirPods’ serial number
You can determine if your AirPods or AirPods Pro is genuine by going to the Apple Coverage Check page and entering the serial number. You will see the results displayed on the page if the AirPods are authentic.
4. Identify Fake AirPods VS Real By Examining The Packaging
Those familiar with tech brands recognize that Apple pays great attention to details, including the packaging. As a result, counterfeit manufacturers struggle to produce high-quality packaging that matches the earbuds. To detect fake AirPods and AirPods Pro, examine the packaging using these methods:
- Check for misspellings or incorrect information on the packaging: If there are any typos or inaccurate information found on the packaging or manuals of your AirPods, it is unlikely to be authentic since a reputable company like Apple would have rigorous proofreading and copywriting processes in place before printing. Therefore, you will likely have fake AirPods if you encounter such errors.
- Verify the logo and the contents of the box: To identify fake AirPods and AirPods Pro, it’s essential to inspect the box contents. Usually, counterfeit products come with only the manual, while genuine AirPods include the manual, safety sheet, and warranty card. When checking the box contents, inspect the logo for authenticity. Authentic logos have clear edges around the bite area, while fake logos may have rounded edges.
- Ensure that the font and color on the packaging and the earbuds are consistent: Identifying font differences between genuine and counterfeit AirPods can be challenging, particularly without the product for comparison. However, typical fake AirPods have a slimmer and taller font with less spacing between letters. Another way to check for authenticity is to compare the color of the text. Though it may be subtle, fake AirPods usually have darker gray text.
- Check if the AirPods fit snugly in your ears to ensure their authenticity: Apple intentionally puts suction in their product’s box, which is something that counterfeit products cannot replicate. To test for authenticity, compare the drag and suction of your AirPods box to an authentic Apple product’s box. If they don’t feel the same, you likely have fake AirPods.
5. Ways To Physically Verify Fake AirPods VS Real
The AirPods resemble the wireless version of the traditional EarPods, but they are much more complex than that. Apple paid attention to the minor details of the AirPods, making it difficult for counterfeit manufacturers to replicate them accurately. While spotting fake packaging is relatively easy, distinguishing real from fake AirPods based on their physical features is more complicated. Even well-made counterfeit AirPods can deceive untrained individuals. Therefore, the following are the essential areas to consider when verifying their authenticity.
- To determine the authenticity of AirPods, you can inspect the diffuser, which is the curved line next to the IR sensor. The diffuser should be appropriately aligned with the black circle next to it. Counterfeit AirPods may have unpolished grills with flat surfaces mixed in with the actual grills.
- You can inspect the bottom part of the earbuds where the charging contacts are located. The charging contacts are magnetically attached to their charging case. The genuine AirPods have an oval shape that occupies about half of the space, while fake ones may have more significant and circular ovals. Furthermore, the grills on counterfeit AirPods may not be as polished as genuine ones.
- Verifying the transparency of the speaker grills and IR sensors is essential in differentiating genuine AirPods from fake ones. Genuine AirPods have two circular speakers that can be seen through the grills, whereas counterfeit ones may not have visible speakers.
- To authenticate the AirPods, you must also examine the charging case. Look for any construction defects that Apple wouldn’t overlook. The critical inspection areas are the multifunction button, charging port, and text beneath the hinge.
6. Here Are Some Distinctive Authentication Checks That Are Specific To AirPods Pro
Although many of the authenticity factors mentioned earlier apply to both standard AirPods and AirPods Pro, there are specific markers that can only confirm whether or not AirPods Pro is genuine. This is because AirPods Pro has distinct technology and design from standard AirPods. For example, unlike AirPods 1, 2, and 3, which are earbuds, AirPods Pro (1 and 2) are in-ear monitors. To authenticate AirPods Pro, you should inspect the force sensor and shape.
- Check the force sensor on the stem’s flat part to verify AirPods Pro. Unlike standard AirPods, it senses pressure when the stem is squeezed instead of having a button. Fake ones often have side buttons or no controls.
- Examining their design is one way to distinguish between authentic and fake AirPods Pro. Apple places great emphasis on protecting the shape and structure of its AirPods products, even going as far as seizing similar-looking earbuds through US Customs. Therefore, checking the design is an effective method of identifying fake AirPods Pro. Specifically, counterfeit earpieces often have a different shape than authentic ones. Genuine AirPods Pro has oval-shaped earpieces, while fake versions may have circular earpieces.
Although verifying the authenticity of AirPods can be challenging, the tips mentioned earlier will help you spot fake AirPods VS real ones. This knowledge will enable you to avoid being tricked by individuals offering counterfeit products at a low price. Now that you possess this information, you can confidently purchase authentic AirPods. If you have any additional advice that has aided you in the past, please don’t hesitate to share it in the comments section below!