OnePlus Buds mistaken for counterfeit Airpods by US customs


    For years, Apple’s design has given ideas for more or less cheeky copies. In this case, it’s a delivery of OnePlus Buds, which apparently come too close to the Apple design that was seized by the United States Customs and Border Protection.

    A few days ago, U.S. Customs announced a seemingly normal discovery of electronic counterfeits via Twitter and a press release. However, at first glance, one realizes that it was not just a load of cheap copies of Apple AirPods that arrived in white boxes with deceptive labels from the Far East.


    CBP officers at JFK Airport recently seized 2,000 counterfeit Apple AirPods from Hong Kong, valued at $ 398K had they been genuine.

    Details via @CBPNewYorkCity:

    – CBP (@CBP)
    September 14, 2020

    As the photos show, this is very clearly a delivery of 2,000 OnePlus Buds. The Verge reports that the delivery came from Hong Kong and reached New York City’s John F. Kennedy International Airport on August 31. The delivery destination was Nevada.

    The press release also mentions that the estimated value of the goods if they had been “genuine” would be $ 398,000. Of course, the OnePlus Buds don’t cost 199, just $ 79. The reason for the confiscation is a violation of the “trademark of the product Apple, in other words, the design of the AirPods themselves.

    OnePlus remained calm and took the opportunity to respond to the authorities’ tweet:

    Hey, give those back!

    – OnePlus USA (@OnePlus_USA)
    September 14, 2020

    OnePlus Buds: The entry was not a mistake

    The Verge also wanted to be sure and rule out that maybe this was just a mistake by the authorities. The reaction to a request for clarification was clear, it was not a mistake. This was confirmed once again when a “CBP import specialist determined that the earphones in question appeared to infringe Apple’s trademark.” The delivery was therefore seized.

    In addition, they also reacted to the question of whether it was not possible to clearly see on the packaging that the product was a legitimate OnePlus product and not “fake AirPods”. The answer is simple: packaging played no role in this affair: “A company is not required to put an ‘Apple’ wordmark or logo on its products to infringe its trademarks,” according to the statement.

    OnePlus or the importers of the products will now have the opportunity to prove that the headphones do not infringe the affected trademarks, a spokesperson said.

    OnePlus has repeatedly declined to comment on the matter to The Verge. The headphones will continue to be available as usual from various retailers in the United States. Also, Apple has not taken legal action against OnePlus over the OnePlus Buds.

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