How to make an iClone for less than $20

Minimum requirements

We should start of with the most obvious thing you’re going to need, and that’s an Android phone. That’s the part of this guide that goes out of the $20 spectrum. If you’ve already got one, great, but we can’t just magically turn a twenty dollar note into a gadget. You need an Android phone for this guide.

We’d say “any Android phone”, but that’s not true. You’re going to need something recent, with at least Android 2.2 on it. To find out what you’ve got, head to settings and press “About phone”. At the bottom of this menu, you’ll see a section labeled “Android version” with a number in it.

The first two numbers are critical here: you want 2.2 or 2.3. If it says 2.2.1, you’re fine. If it’s say 2.3.5, you’re fine. If it says 2.1.anything, check the manufacturer’s support page to see if there’s an update – if there is, download it; if not, you’re going to need a new handset.

We've got lots of phones to test this on.

You’re also going to need a Google account – don’t worry, it’s free – and a credit card/debit card number to associate with the “Market” part of your Google account. That’s pretty easy to do: just fill in the required info when the phone asks for it. The reason you need a credit card is because we’ll be purchasing a few apps to make the handset look more like an iPhone. These apps do cost money, but it’s not much.

It’s also important to note that while these modifications will make your Android look like an iPhone, your Android phone will never actually be an iPhone.

Don’t walk into an Apple store and ask them to help you with your iClone. They’ll probably just give you dumbfounded looks and stares. They may even laugh at you.

To help you understand just how this can be applied to nearly any Android phone, we’ll be showing the process on several devices, including the $99 Huawei X3, HTC’s Desire S, and Motorola’s new ultra-thin RAZR. You can do this on nearly any handset, although it may not work the same way on every device.