China is one of the most important markets for the tech industry, and not only because the faraway country is where most of our products are made. China holds what could be considered the Mecca of products, accessories, replacements and general tinkering.
The North Huaqiang district is known to be one of the most important tech meeting spots in China. You will find markets that extend multiple floors high, with halls filled with nothing but gadgets and tech-related products. It is geeky wonderland, and it’s as magical as it sounds. So magical that it can literally turn your iPhone 5c into an iPhone 5s!
Diving deep enough into this sea of technology will allow you to find the right people to take on this task. This transformation is not simple, but it’s also not impossible in such a market. The guys at Chinese website TechBang ran across a Baidu post that shows you the whole process, and we thought some of you may enjoy seeing the images.
Turning an iPhone 5c into an iPhone 5s
The first step into making a fake iPhone 5s would be to get an iPhone 5c. More specifically, you need the iPhone 5c’s motherboard. Interestingly enough, the rest of the phone is not really needed.
Because China is the home of where these iPhones are made, it’s easy to get an iPhone 5s casing, which you can see in the images below. The repairer can simply install the motherboard in the new casing and go from there.
You can use the original screen, but many businesses choose to use a fake, which only costs 120 Yuan. The battery is also different and only costs 30 Yuan. The interesting part here is that the home button looks identical to the iPhone 5s’, but it actually lacks the Touch ID feature. That is the main differentiator in these devices, really.
After putting everything together, the front casing can be attached to the back, but the phone’s capabilities are tested beforehand. You could just walk out with a working phone from there, but this Chinese market can do more.
The next step to make this phone look as original as possible is to get yourself some engraving services. It only costs 10 Yuan to engrave these devices, allowing you to have all those FCC engravings in your device. For us it would be hard to imagine people wanting those annoying engravings, but if people want the closest to reality….
The last steps would be to install the software and take care of the packaging. By the way, the package comes with the same stickers and everything the real boxes come with. Then boom, you got yourself a fully-assembled and working fake iPhone 5s.
The general consumer will say this is really bad, as you never know if you are getting a real device or not. Just think of how many of these make it to eBay. Are you really getting what you think you are getting? Who knows.
On the other hand, it’s very interesting to see the whole process of making these devices. Think of this as the iPhone black market, and you are seeing the whole process from the ground up. These are products many of us would never even consider putting together, but in China they are being passed around like sandwiches.
Imagine if you walked into a phone store and they put together the phone right in front of you. This is what’s going on here! So interesting, right?