Knowing how to properly identify OEM and Non-OEM LCD screens is just one of the methods every cell phone repair shop should be auditing to ensure their not being taken advantage of by their LCD screen recycler.
Yet, after 2+ years it still seems to be an area that has many mixed methods and varying identification methods.
To be honest, the fault should be placed on LCD buyback companies for not educating their clients on their exact internal identification methods. It should be our responsibility to provide this information upfront to prevent any negative experiences later on down the road. If the information isn’t provided upfront, repair shops should ask.
In fact, it’s more likely that a negative experience happens because common knowledge isn’t common sense between buyer and seller rather than one trying to take advantage of another.
With that said, there ARE dozens of obvious and not-so-obvious ways to distinguish OEM and Non-OEM yet we try to instill two main concepts; simplicity and accuracy.
iPhone 4/4s OEM (Original) LCD Screen
Our rule for OEM (Original) iPhone 4/4s is simple:
- A wavy looking “V” centered across the middle of the digitizer flex cable.
iPhone 4/4s Non-Original LCD Screen
Notice there is no “V” on a copy/non-original LCD digitizer flex cable.
- Colored screens
- laser etchings on the QR code
- serial numbers on the back of the LCD screen
- differences in the white lettering on the flex cables
- water beading on the touch panel
Yes, these other methods can be used to identify OEM vs Non-OEM on LCD screens where the “V” is in question. But if you’re going for a quick and simple audit, the “V” test is going to hold true ~98% of the time.
iPhone 5/5c/5s Original vs Non-Original
For iPhone 5/5c/5s we also use just one main rule:
- A Green ring where the camera holder is located = Original LCD (Pictured on top)
- If the camera ring isn’t green = Non-Original.
Keeping it Simple
Other methods can be used to identify OEM or Non-OEM condition but require a lot more effort to get to the same result that these 2 single rules will immediately identify 98%+ of the time. No one ever complains about a ~2% difference. A mix of all the other methods will result in differences between OEM and Non-OEM.
With respect to your time, let’s keep it simple and accurate.
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Alex Michael Genson says
Do you have any more tips for determing 5/5c/5s OEM vs Aftermarket screens and newer models like iPhone 6/6+/6S/6S+?
Dustin , Where can I purchase original parts from ? I have spoken with many suppliers from china but don’t know who to trust
Can anyone help?
I have several OEM 5s/5c/5 screens that do not have the green ring around where the camera went. Do all OEM supposed to have that?
Andre Jones says
Thank you so much just entered the cell phone repair business looking to be my own boss all this information is so useful thanks a lot.
Ghufran Arif says
Hi Dustin, how’re you? I wish I could be able to read this post before 2 days. As I purchased iPhone 4/4s OEM LCD Screen from online as I didn’t know there was a difference. But I’ve contacted them and they told me they will refund or replace the part with any other in their stock. Anyway this post really amazed me. Will bookmark it soon.
Can anyone help I am looking for a mobile phone repair course any suggestions please
Ive never found any
This is insane! Some peace of scum steals your phone, you blacklist it to make sure that they will not be able to use it and then there are websites such as these that make it easy for them to unlock your phone and make money at your expense. Helping criminals…wtf
Annie i guess you did not understand what this website is for. They do not buy stolen phones, they buy cracked screens to recycle them and reuse the lcds. Do not label honest working people as scums, as this is not fair to them.