If you’re in the market for a pair of AirPods Pro and worried if you may get ripped off buying a fake, then you’ve arrived at the right place.
Numerous Chinese companies have developed AirPods Pro clones and the market is flooded with them. They’re pretty much identical to the original Apple AirPods Pro in terms of design, but lack the clarity and sound quality that you’d experience with the original.
This guide has been created to help you all determine whether your AirPods Pro are real or fake. Whether it’s because you’re picking them up from an unreliable source or just for peace of mind.
Here’s how to spot fake AirPods Pro
- Scan your AirPods Pro code
- Check the diffusers on the AirPods Pro
- Cross verify the L & R inscriptions
- Fake vs Real AirPods Pro speakers
- Check the bottom side of the AirPods Pro
- Fake vs Real AirPods Pro side gap
- Fake vs Real AirPods Pro sensor
- Fake vs Real AirPods Pro lightning port
- Verify the charging case
Table of Contents
How to Spot Fake AirPods Pro
Apple AirPods come with a scannable barcode on the inside of the charging case (under the upper lid, in the right AirPods groove). This is by far the easiest way to spot whether your AirPods Pro are real or fake. All you would have to do is locate the unique code and cross check its validity by entering the code on the official Apple Authentication Site.
Apart from this, there are a few other ways you can check and see if your AirPods Pro are real or fake. Let me take you through the steps you will need to follow in order to determine whether your AirPods Pro are fake.
Method 1 — Scan your AirPods Pro code
The most reliable and sure-shot way to find out if your AirPods Pro are real or fake is to scan the serial number that’s located within the charging case.
Once you enter this code on Apple’s authentication website, you will get to know if they’re real or not. Each AirPods Pro that is manufactured comes with a unique barcode, it’s typically an alphanumeric code that is assigned to that particular model and is only available on authentic Apple products.
Though this may be the most apt way to check the authenticity of your AirPods Pro, there are chances that someone might have swapped the real earbuds with fake ones along with the original charging case.
If that’s the case then you can move on to the remaining methods on how to spot fake AirPods Pro.
Method 2 — Check the diffusers on the AirPods Pro
Though fake and real AirPods Pro look alike, there are subtle differences between both, such as the exterior and interior diffusers. While the original AirPods Pro is made from premium materials, that’s not the case with fake AirPods Pro.
With a fake pair of the AirPods Pro, you will notice that the exterior diffuser seems to have a grey metallic outline that is not present on the original pair. It bulges a bit and is not in line with the shape of the AirPods Pro.
When it comes to the inner diffuser, you will find that the original AirPods Pro has a round-edged rectangle that is colored Black and reflects light, whereas the fake AirPods Pro is slightly grayish and has a matte finish to it so it can not reflect any light.
Method 3 — Cross verify the L & R inscriptions
If you’re still not certain, you can check the inscription on the AirPods Pro. Authentic AirPods Pro comes with an L & R inscribed on the inner side of the earbud. Though this is a small and really minor detail, manufacturers who sell clone AirPods Pro tend to miss inscribing the earbuds.
Some AirPods Pro replica units may carry the L & R inscriptions, but chances are they would be misaligned. Other fake AirPods Pro might not even come with the L & R inscription so you will easily figure out whether they’re original or fake.
Method 4 — Fake vs Real AirPods Pro speakers
Even though fake AirPods Pro look like the real deal, you can tell that they’re not the original product by simply examining the speaker units.
Fake AirPods Pro comes with speakers that are a different shade than the original and are made of low quality materials. The mesh is flimsy and you will easily be able to determine whether they are original or fake simply by noticing the number of flaws with the speakers.
There’s even a silver colored material that’s present next to the speaker that’s there in the original AirPods Pro but is not available on replicas of the AirPods Pro.
Method 5 — Check the bottom side of the AirPods Pro
While comparing the original AirPods Pro with a replica, we noticed that there’s a significant difference in the metal plate that’s positioned at the bottom side of each earbud.
Original AirPods Pro have a metal plate that runs around the side of the earbud, this metal piece has a standard dimension and every AirPods Pro will have one of the same size.
On the other hand, replica or fake AirPods Pro will have the same metal piece on the bottom side, but it will not be made of a good quality material and would not have a standard measurement.
Rather, the metal plate on the fake AirPods Pro would come with wider dimensions making it look awkward and with this you’ll easily get to know that the AirPods Pro are fake.
Method 6 — Fake vs Real AirPods Pro side gap
For this method, we’ll take you through how you can analyze the side gap on the AirPods Pro and determine whether they’re original or fake.
Here, you will find that the gap on the side of each earbud will be longer in counterfeit AirPods Pro than the original ones, which are shorter.
Another way to figure out if they’re fake is by examining the prominence of each gap. The gaps on the side of the real AirPods Pro earbud will be perfectly created and less deep than fake ones.
Method 7 — Fake vs Real AirPods Pro sensor
One of the biggest differences between original and fake AirPods Pro is the sensor that detects when the earbud is in your ear.
This sensor is situated underneath the part of the earbud that sits in your ear. Fake AirPods Pro do not come with an in-ear sensor and there wouldn’t be any marking on the earbud.
It’s one of the easiest ways to figure out if your AirPods Pro is fake or not as most third-party AirPods Pro replicas do not have the sensor present.
Method 8 — Fake vs Real AirPods Pro lightning port
This is a way to check the authenticity of your AirPods Pro charging case without having to enter the serial number online.
Here, you will need to flip the charging case around and take a quick look at the lightning port.
As with all Apple products that use the lightning port, you will notice that the metallic ring outlining the port is thin and small, this is not the case with fake AirPods Pro.
With a counterfeit charging case, you will see that the metallic outline of the lightning port is rather thicker and larger than the original Apple AirPods Pro. The finishing is not on point and it looks quite weird.
Method 9 — Verify the charging case
Another easy way to see if your AirPods Pro is fake is by examining the text at the back of the case, right above the Setup button.
Original Apple AirPods Pro will have the “Designed by Apple in California” and “Assembled in China” inscribed in a certain font and format. It’s small, easy to read and not loopy.
On a fake AirPods Pro charging case you will notice that the text is lighter, smaller and at times faded or fading. This never happens with an original pair of AirPods Pro.
Method 10 — Check the Packaging Of Airpods
One genuine way of spotting a fake AirPod from the original one is by carefully inspecting the packaging of the Airpods box and if there are spelling errors, double spaces, printing issues, and pixelation in photos, then you can definitely spot the knockoffs. You can also look closely into the quality of the packaging. Apple always pays very close attention and never compromises on the quality of the packaging material.
On the side, the authentic box has two separate stickers while the fake Airpods have only one sticker that runs the length of the box. Even the fonts and apple logo in packaging can be compared easily. The Apple logo has got sharp edges in its packaging box while the fonts are thicker and have less space in between. While fake Airpods have thinner fonts and curvy Apply logos in the box.
You will also notice the cover on the real Airpods is tight and on the fake AirPods it is quite loose. While the languages mentioned in a real or genuine Airpod box package may mention four different languages-English, French, Spanish, and Japanese while the fake Airpods may have less like for example English, French, and German.
The design is another factor to consider and identify between a genuine and real Airpod. If you notice any extra vents, misalignment, or shape differences, then it is definitely a knockoff. For example typing errors such as “Dseigned by Apple” or translation errors spotted in the labeling. Another example being; “Compatible with iOS device, iPadOS device, Apple Watch or Mac with the latest software Works with Qi-certified chargers.” There is a missing full stop before Works (period in US English).
Another way of spotting fake AirPods is by the fact that it should connect instantly to your iPhone once you open it from its packaging. This feature is usually missing in the fake Airpods.
How can I spot fake AirPods Pro fast
I’ll finally take you through the technical differences between real and fake AirPods Pro. It’s evident that manufacturers who sell counterfeit products don’t take everything seriously and you will find that there’s a lot of difference between what’s in a real AirPod Pro and a counterfeit one.
Here are a couple of differences between real and counterfeit AirPods Pro that I’ve been able to figure out based on experience and numerous trials.
- It’s good to note that original Apple AirPods Pro are available only in a single color (White) and anything else apart from that color are fake.
- Original AirPods Pro connects with your iPhone in under 10 seconds from the moment you tap on the Setup button. This is not the case with fake AirPods Pro as they would take longer time to connect and at times there would be a drop in the connection.
- Fake AirPods Pro come with relatively shorter battery life and they will die faster than the original AirPods Pro would.
- Chinese AirPods Pro (replicas) would have a female/male voice that plays when you connect the AirPods to a device. Original Apple AirPods Pro play only standard Apple sounds.
- Fake AirPods Pro charging cases at times come with a USB-C charging port as compared to the lightning port that’s on an original AirPod Pro case.
- Lastly, “Find My” will not work with fake AirPods Pro and you can check whether you’re able to track your AirPods Pro using “Find My” to determine whether they’re fake or original.
AirPods Pro are some pretty powerful TWS earbuds that make listening to music all the more fun. They’re smart devices and are extremely popular making them some of the most cloned earbuds out there.
It’s best to go in for an original set of AirPods Pro as you will not regret what they have to offer. In my opinion, the best way to spot a fake AirPods Pro is by scanning the code within the charging case.
If it’s not there then you know the case is fake and you can proceed to check the AirPods Pro themselves to see if any of the differences I mentioned earlier are present.
Greetings! My name is Michael and this is my website.
I've been specializing in audio equipment and accessories for a while and have a little something in store for every kind of hi-fi enthusiast.
Based in California, I keep attending special launch events across the globe. This has helped me understand the products better, and with a unique hands-on experience I'm able to provide you with easy to understand reviews about the best in audio tech from around the world.