TMZ is today posting images, claiming to be a real iPhone 6. The juicy headline is causing the post to pick up some momentum, but unfortunately this is not the case. The device the site shows is merely one of the several Android clones floating around which run an iOS 7-esque skin. 9to5Mac covered one of these clones extensively in late July. The design is based off the alleged iPhone 6 schematics dating back to March.

You can tell TMZ’s photo depict one of these clones in several ways. For one, the Home Screen is flaunting the iOS 7 layout rather than the iOS 8 organization of apps, which can be seen at the bottom of Apple’s microsite. The Health app is also completely absent, a tell-tale sign.

Even more blatant is the use of font for the text in the Calendar icon. Most icons in iOS are simply images which can be ripped out of the system firmware for these clone manufactures to exploit, but the calendar icon is actually generated dynamically (so the day and date labels can update to match the current system time). This makes it an easy way to spot clones, as the fakes are often too lazy to recreate this accurately. In this case, the first image shows that the Calendar icon uses a heavy bold font-face for the date (’13’), when iOS 7 and iOS 8 use a much thinner lightweight font.

Although these clones get better and better at copying the real thing, it is still not that hard to spot the fakes. We currently expect Apple to announce the real iPhone 6 at a special press event on September 9th.

About the Author

Benjamin Mayo

Benjamin develops iOS apps professionally and covers Apple news and rumors for 9to5Mac. Listen to Benjamin, every week, on the Happy Hour podcast. Check out his personal blog. Message Benjamin over email or Twitter.