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Watch a man build his own iPhone 6s from spare parts bought on the street

Posted: , by Kaloyan C.

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You can buy pretty much everything in China, provided you know exactly where to look – and youtuber Scotty Allen wanted to prove that. So he decided to go on a quest to build his own iPhone 6s entirely from spare parts bought from Chinese street vendors.  The end result was – spoiler alert – a like-new device at a cost of about $300, so you might say that the journey was... a 6s.*

Clocking at almost 24 minutes, the video starts entering documentary territory, but is nonetheless a fascinating look into the country's blooming business of unauthorized selling of spare parts. Pretty much everything you'd need to make your own iPhone, from screws to screen digitizers, can be found out in the public markets. Booths with hand-drawn logos of companies like Samsung, Xiaomi, and, of course, Apple, are nestled against each other, selling what turns out to be genuine hardware, albeit sourced from dubious supply chains.

The biggest hurdle in the process was apparently the logic board, which contains a multitude of small separate chips. Ultimately, the man gives up on assembling one of his own due to having trouble soldering everything correctly, as well as simply finding every chip needed to complete the board. Instead, he opts to buy a used one instead, which, curiously enough, is under warranty.

However, don't get too excited about going to China and assembling your own iPhone just yet – while the parts themselves were calculated to cost about $300, this doesn't include all the tools used and broken parts that didn't make it into the device: in fact, the youtuber says he spent "well over $1,000" in the course of the journey. Still, this video is an interesting look at how big the phone industry is in China and what effect it has on everyday life there.

*Joke shamelessly stolen from the video's YouTube comment section

13 Comments
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posted on 13 Apr 2017, 03:13

1. phonehome (Posts: 809; Member since: 19 Dec 2014)


I was expecting this to be a Chinese guy.

Anyway and kind of with this, surprised nobody has yet created a 'Frankenphone' mod which makes the battery user-replaceable. Many hardcore (and maybe softcore) users would pay a few hundred for such a thing (including a spare battery of course).

Wonder what will come first, such a battery mod or mainstream physical gamepad adaptor (also in the interest of many)?

posted on 13 Apr 2017, 03:26 6

2. submar (Posts: 534; Member since: 19 Sep 2014)


0:56
US guy: I want an iPhone 6s.
Chinese woman: Sex?

posted on 13 Apr 2017, 03:42

4. phonehome (Posts: 809; Member since: 19 Dec 2014)


If 'massage parlours' are tolerated there.

posted on 13 Apr 2017, 07:29

8. Arch_Fiend (Posts: 3311; Member since: 03 Oct 2015)


Stuff like that doesn't actually happen lol.

posted on 13 Apr 2017, 10:09

12. PHYCLOPSH (Posts: 489; Member since: 28 Jun 2014)


It does happen, just make sure you ask them to show their private parts first. A real police officer would never oblige to this, and any charges would easily be thrown out for entrapment.

posted on 13 Apr 2017, 03:33

3. SIGPRO (Posts: 1825; Member since: 03 Oct 2012)


Would even use it if i got it for free!

posted on 13 Apr 2017, 04:09

5. Zack_2014 (Posts: 482; Member since: 25 Mar 2014)


Won't IMEI be tracked if these parts were from stolen phones or blacklisted ones?

posted on 13 Apr 2017, 04:50 7

6. ibend (Posts: 6427; Member since: 30 Sep 2014)


and apple will brick that guy's phone with their new update..

posted on 13 Apr 2017, 06:17 2

7. nebula (Posts: 821; Member since: 20 Feb 2015)


Nice one :)

posted on 13 Apr 2017, 07:51

9. SleeperOne (Posts: 370; Member since: 25 Feb 2017)


Did what factory workers do/did not forever ago. Woot.

posted on 13 Apr 2017, 08:28

10. sebbellic01 (Posts: 278; Member since: 03 May 2016)


Always wondered if someone could literally manufacture a specific phone themselves from only using spare parts for that specific phone. Great video.

posted on 13 Apr 2017, 10:13 1

13. kakudiego (Posts: 30; Member since: 21 May 2014)


$300 os the real price for a iPhone!

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