Funny. Just before seeing your post I spent over an hour purchasing toner on ebay for my 11-year-old Brother muliti-function printer. It took a long time because trying to discern which of the "Certified New OEM Brother" listings was really that and not a refilled unit or even a complete counterfeit. IMO, that's easier said than done. What's funny in this case is that the printer and OEM toner are made in China and I believe the refilled counterfeits are made in the US (but perhaps not).
The other items for which I struggle to find quality OEM replacement units are cell phone or laptop batteries. The main problem is that the OEMs often stop manufacturing the batteries *before* I need a replacement, so I need to go to ebay to find a quality replacement. (In the case of batteries, calendar degradation means that old OEM stock is not a great solution, even if you can find them.)
As someone who was suckered into purchasing counterfeit Wii remotes once upon a time, I am a bit sensitive to this issue.
So, what to do? I guess I have developed a few techniques that I apply when purchasing on ebay:
- For toner, I look for a box that is fully sealed with only ONE piece of tape on each seam. (For some reason, toner refillers don't seem interested in counterfeiting the boxes when the get so many OEM boxes back with the old toner cartridges.)
- I also tend to purchase from individuals or small companies who are selling because the replaced their printer. If they have 10 or more in stock, I get a bit suspicious.
- For cell phones, I tend to purchase about 2-year-old new equipment. I have decided to purchase new, OEM batteries at the same time. Yes, they will get have some calendar loss over time, but it is not as high as cycling losses. I recently bought several LG phones and found what appeared to be new OEM stock of spare batteries for a good price. They had 2017 date codes just like the ones in my phones, so I think they are legit. But who knows?
- For laptops, I have found that there are a couple of companies out there who make replacement units using only top-quality Li-ion cells. Sorry, I don't recall the name right now.
At the end of the day, not only consumers, but the sellers on ebay who have legitimate stock are the ones who are hurt by the counterfeiters. They are selling against much cheaper deals and it puts a lot of downward pressure on their prices.
BTW, does anyone know of a high-quality app for Android which will measure and report the capacity of the battery in the phone WITHOUT needing to ROOT the phone? I'm sure the phone knows (estimates) that information, but I haven't found a simple way to get at it.