iOS 14.4 Will Introduce Warning on iPhones With Non-Genuine Cameras
In the second beta of iOS 14.4 seeded to developers and public testers this week, MacRumors contributor Steve Moser has discovered code indicating that Apple will be introducing a new warning on iPhones that have had their camera repaired or replaced with aftermarket components rather than genuine Apple components.
"Unable to verify this iPhone has a genuine Apple camera," the message will read. As with a similar warning for non-genuine iPhone displays, the message will likely appear in the Settings app under General > About as necessary, and the warning may also appear as a notification on the Lock screen for a short period.
Apple's similar display-related warning does not affect the ability to use the iPhone or display in any way, so this will presumably be the case with the camera-related warning as well, but it remains to be seen. Apple also displays a similar message for non-genuine iPhone batteries that likewise does not impact use of the device beyond disabling a battery health feature that displays the battery's maximum capacity remaining.
The non-genuine camera message will likely direct users towards a future Apple support document emphasizing the importance of iPhone repairs being completed by authorized, trained technicians using genuine Apple parts, including Apple, Apple Authorized Service Providers, and those part of Apple's Independent Repair Provider Program.
Last year, repair website iFixit reported that authorized technicians are required to run Apple's proprietary, cloud-based System Configuration app to complete camera and display repairs on all iPhone 12 models, citing internal Apple documentation. Failure to complete this step can result in the camera experiencing issues or becoming completely unresponsive in a short amount of time, according to iFixit's testing.
Update: Apple has publicly confirmed this feature in the iOS 14.4 Release Candidate notes ("Notifications for when the camera on your iPhone is unable to be verified as a new, genuine Apple camera in iPhone 12, iPhone 12 mini, iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 12 Pro Max").