With China being so prevalent with mobile phone knock offs, its a good hunch that the future will be filled with fake phones. Nokia researcher Jan Chipchase took some photos to go and has a story about these fakes.

All the phones you see below are fakes - mostly fake iPhones and Nokias, for sale in China. Chipchase writes that there are three basic types of fake phone:

1. Any old phone with a Nokia/Motorola/Apple logo or two printed on the side. In India these are referred to as ‘China Mobile' (no relation to this China Mobile) - phones that may or may not last out the month. These sometimes fool first time consumers in markets with low mobile phone penetration. Top photo on this page shows a fake 'Nokia'.
2. Where the industrial design is copied, the device includes Nokia/Motorola/Apple logo but the device itself tends to be poorly manufactured. Some of the designs are based on products already on the market, but all the industrial designer needs is a leaked photo or official press release from another country to be able to manufacture the hardware - sometimes offering it for sale in a local market before the official device is launched.
3. Recently the quality of fakes/copies have reached the point where many consumers will assume they are holding the real thing in their hands - phones that look, feel and behave like the real thing – right down to start up sequences, graphical assets, user interface modalities for the the top-level user interface elements - the so-called Super Fakes.

Chipchase explains that type #2 also includes fakes that are released before the official models they knock off. He even rates the design of the popular superfake Nokia 5800:

Exceptional attention to detail: industrial design; line art; battery design and placement; right down to the detailing on the inside back cover; boot up sequence; top level information architecture; use of graphical assets and fully working Media Bar button. Room for improvement? Integration with online services; graphic designer needs to go on a typography course.

As a matter of fact, some of these phones even have the best of two phones. Or three. And sometimes, even comes with a function to watch TV. I kid you not.


via Jan Chipchase's Future Perfect