Man Builds a Working iPhone from Parts Bought on Chinese Gray Market (VIDEO)



/ 3 months ago

Man Builds a Working iPhone from Parts Bought on Chinese Gray Market (VIDEO)

World traveller Scotty Allen is like most tech enthusiasts and enjoys a hands-on DIY experience. For his latest endeavor however, he took it upon himself to build a fully functioning iPhone 6S smartphone made of various recycled and refurbished parts from Huaqiangbei “gray” market in Shenzen, China. According to Allen, it is “just like building a PC”, but much smaller and he is right. The hardest part is actually sourcing working hardware. Huaqiangbei’s markets are a busy, one-of-a-kind market where tech enthusiasts can find various parts recycled and being sold, mostly for smartphones and tablets. This includes logic boards, screens, batteries, etc and it is also the perfect place to start looking for parts for this kind of project.

Man Builds a Working iPhone from Parts Bought on Chinese Gray Market (VIDEO)

Although Allen did not speak the language, he had help from some of his friends who helped him purchase some of the parts in person. Huaqiangbei market is very busy so that added to the difficulty with sourcing the parts. Luckily, the parts are mostly affordable and only cost him $300 in total, discounting some of the items he purchased that turned out to be unnecessary such as the soldering equipment and the blank logic boards he purchased when he thought he could solder the components by hand. Some parts such as batteries only cost around $5 USD and are quite common in Huaqiangbei, but finding a working logic board took the bulk of the cost and effort to find.

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The entire video is 24 minutes long but very interesting from start to finish. More information is also available in Allen’s website StrangeParts.com.


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  • Neil Fedder

    the big question is, why the hell would you want to build an iphone?

    • Feiz Chowtee

      Probably so that he doesn’t have to pay premium price to buy one. Also it’s probably because he can.