Apple has a creative method of setting their products apart from knockoffs. It's a slight design choice that's so elusive that most people, including con artists, probably won't notice the difference.

There was undoubtedly a huge demand for the pricey $1,000 iPhone X, even though they are reportedly cutting production in half in Q1. You might remember the memes making fun of its incredibly steep price. However, that didn't stop people from forming massive lines outside Apple stores hours before they even opened their doors (I personally bought mine online -- seemed like a more feasible path). There was clearly a high demand for the iPhone X even though many didn't want to dish out $1,000 on a phone. 

Knockoffs Were Borne

However, Bogus iPhones from China soon entered the market at one-tenth of the price. GooPhone, the company behind the fakes, was apparently so convinced about their product that they attempted to sue Apple for copyright (that's a bold move, Cotton). 

Experts and Apple enthusiasts often point out some very startling differences to distinguish between real and fake iPhones. The most common alteration is the technology - a knockoff iPhone X usually relies on Android technology and in some models, features like Siri or the fingerprint scanner don't function properly.

The Genius Technique

There's one other way to spot a fake iPhone: its rounded edges. The iPhone X has rounded screen corners called squircles - a cross between a square and a circle (yes, this is a real thing). However, Apple's squircles aren't exactly the same as rounding a corner with a circular arc - they're subtly different and require precise examination to spot the changes. The products have something called curvature continuity, meaning that straight lines never meet at a single point.

Why is this so important? The trained eye can spot the difference between an Apple product and an item with rounded corners. Apple products have no sudden jumps in curvature and show a much smoother transition when compared to other objects with fixed curvatures. 

Apple doesn't have a patent on the curves, but most companies simply don't have the dedication or resources to try and match the preciseness of its products. Industrial designers might also be confined by their software or expertise.

Furthermore, finding the exact curve is incredibly difficult, even for the most experienced designers. Marc Edwards from Apply Pixels used his Photoshop skills to try and replicate the shape of iOS apps, but was unable to get an exact match. Many others tried different methods, including creating custom formulas and reverse engineering the final product, but only managed to get close approximations. Apple did, however, release an iOS template for app builders to use.


Apple's attention to detail and craftsmanship is what helped make them the company they are today. Every minor aspect is carefully crafted with finesse and aptitude and in this case, there were major advantages.