Looking to learn how to spot fake AirPods? Scared of getting scammed? Look no further, as we’ve compiled the most complete legit check guide for Apple AirPods.
To put it shortly, the quickest way to spot fake AirPods is to scan the serial number found on the inside of the case (see pictures below on how to find that serial number). Once you get that code, pop it through checkcoverage.apple.com and see whether Apple confirms it for you. If you can’t get ahold of this code, we’ve added fake vs real comparisons for the actual AirPods below!
Remember, fake AirPods will always compromise on quality. To highlight the most common places where these compromises are made, we’ve put together the comparisons you’ll find below.
Without any further ado, let’s jump into the fake vs real Apple AirPods legit check guide.
This is absolutely the most reliable tell in our guide on how to spot fake AirPods. It makes sense why real AirPods will come with a serial number that would be confirmed by Apple on their official website.
I understand this sign can only be checked in a face-to-face meeting or once the AirPods are with you, thus this is why we’ll continue the guide with more steps below so we can teach you how to spot fake AirPods just by looking at them.
Coming back to this guide, you will want to find this unique Apple AirPods serial number once you open the case like so:
Over there in the highlighted area, you will find a code that’s unique to every AirPods case.
Have a look at the picture below with an authentic Apple serial number so we can make it clear for you to find this code:
Once you get that code written down, you will have to go to https://checkcoverage.apple.com
Over there, simply pop in the serial number and this is how we’ll find if your AirPods are fake or real.
As you can see, an authentic pair of Apple headphones will come with confirmation points from their official website.
This should clear out 99% of AirPods legit checks — however, it’s not impossible that someone might switch the case and put in fake AirPods. Very unlikely, but not impossible.
Therefore, this is why we’re not stopping this AirPods legit check guide here.
Moving on with our “how to legit check AirPods” guide, we’ll closely inspect the top area of the headphones.
The diffuser found here must never ever be misaligned. The fake example we’ve attached above seems to not be properly aligned with the circle that sits next to it.
Besides that, if you closely inspect the grille, you will notice a difference in quality.
Having a look at the actual headphone, you will notice a grilled area — that’s what we’ll refer to as the diffuser.
Have a look at the real vs fake AirPods comparison below:
As you can see, the shape of this diffuser is different. The shapes vary on authentic AirPods as well, but they should always come in an oval shape.
Fakes, on the other hand, seem to get this diffuser shape closer to a circle, rather than an oval.
Besides, highlighted in a square you will notice the difference in the two white strips at the bottom.
Not only is there a difference in colour, but the fake AirPods have these strips placed at significantly deeper levels as well.
Flip the case over and have a look at the lightning port, the port through which you would charge the case.
As you can see here, this metal outline that wraps this port is thicker on the fakes, thus having a different shape.
Besides that, even though the light angle in the fake vs real AirPods comparison is different, we can also point out there’s a difference in colour.
The steps we’ve written so far are the best ways to authenticate this item.
The next few steps are still reliable signs of authenticity, but are for non-top-versions of replicas available for this item. We recommend sticking to the steps we’ve explained above to make sure you’re not drawing the wrong conclusions.
(By the way, have you seen our Price Comparison App? No need to compare sellers for the best price — we’ve done that for you.)
Having a look at the rear side of the case, we’ve found three main flaws.
For starters, the circle button is placed higher than it’s meant to be on the fake AirPods case.
Next up, the “Designed by Apple in California / Assembled in China” text is not only thicker on the fake AirPods case, but also printed in a different shade of grey.
As a consequence, the spacing between the hinges and the text is different. We’ve highlighted the difference in the grey boxes.
Last but not least, we’ll address the difference found in the hinge area. Here’s a closer picture comparison:
As you can see, the way the hinge is segmented is significantly sharper on the fake AirPods case. That, once again, shows a lack of craftsmanship and quality, since fake manufacturers are compromising for the sake of a cheaper price.
On top of that, the replica case used this mirror-like material on the hinge — which reflects everything more than the material found on the authentic case.
Last but not least, one very important detail for how to spot a fake AirPods case can be noticed by opening it up and inspecting the light-up indicator.
As we’ve highlighted in the picture above, it looks like the light-up indicator on the AirPods case is misplaced.
This flaw is not always found on the replica AirPods, since it’s obviously a blatant mistake, but we felt like adding it to our guide just so you will be reminded to have a quick check of this detail as well.
I understand people are concerned with the fake vs real AirPod headphone comparison, yet we’ve placed the box higher on this list since the flaws are easier to identify here.
For obvious reasons, the quality lacks on the box that comes with the headphones since fake manufacturers don’t care that much about the small details.
For starters, we’ll have a look at the bottom side of the enclosed box.
Over here we can notice three things:
Moving on to the side, the AirPods text is significantly different. For one, the classic San Francisco font is not used on the fake AirPods box.
Besides that, the fake text has reflective properties, while the authentic box has this textbox simply printed in grey.
On another facet of the box cover, you will notice a huge giveaway for the replica. As you can see, multiple separate stickers are attached to the authentic box.
Besides that, it seems like the fake AirPods come with Chinese text in the upper left corner. Whether there is or isn’t Chinese text anywhere on the box can vary based on the region where the Apple AirPods were purchased from.
However, it looks like regardless of the region, the text found on the fakes is slightly thicker.
Moving on to the side with the Apple logo, it seems that once again the fakes have this area printed with a reflective material, rather than simply printing it in grey.
Last but not least, upon opening the box you will notice the covering cardboard with instruction papers.
Yet again, the properties of this text are different. The fake AirPods have “Designed by Apple in California” printed in black, instead of grey.
We will finish this authentication guide by mentioning there are technical differences on the counterfeit AirPods.
It almost goes without saying that this happens since replica manufacturers don’t plan on perfectly replicating the Apple chips that are found inside the original AirPods — and most likely, nor do they have access to what Apple has developed.
We will note here:
If you have read this guide and are still uncertain about whether your AirPods are real or fake, the Legit Check App offers an authentication service to put your mind at ease.
Should you either not be confident in your ability to follow this guide or are simply lacking time, all you have to do is send us high-quality pictures of your Apple AirPods and we will get back to you with the results within 24 to 48 hours.
The results will also come with a report on why we believe your AirPods are fake or authentic.
Need our opinion over your item’s authenticity? It’s a service we provide.
Thank you for reading this,
Ch Daniel and Ch David