FINDING THE ESN/IMEI/SERIAL NUMBER ON MOBILE DEVICES

Like most electronics, mobile devices have serial numbers assigned to them at the factory. In addition, mobile phones also have IMEI numbers (short for "International Mobile Station Equipment Identity") that can be used to identify an individual handset. Some mobile phones also have electronic serial numbers (ESN) assigned to them by the Telecommunications Industry of America.

Here are some tips for finding these numbers on a few of the most popular mobile devices.

How to Find the Serial Number on an iPod

On the outside of the device

The serial number is engraved on the back of your device. On some iPod Shuffle models, you can find it on or under the clip.

On the About screen

  1. Turn on the device.
  2. Select Settings.
  3. Select General.
  4. Select About.
  5. Press the center button until the serial number appears.

Note: On iPod classic and older versions of iPod Nano, the About section will be in the Settings menu, so you can skip the step where you would select General.

In iTunes

If your iPod is synched with the iTunes software on your computer, you will be able to find the serial number there. Here's how:

  1. Connect your device to a computer with iTunes.
  2. Select the iPod when it appears in the Devices section of the menu on left side of the iTunes window.
  3. Select the Summary tab. The serial number should appear on the screen.

Note: If you are looking for the serial number on an iPod Touch, iPod Shuffle or other iPod model that doesn't display a Summary tab in iTunes, try selecting the Settings tab. The serial number should appear there.

Other places to look

Additionally, a bar code with the serial number should be on the device's original packaging. Some retailers print the serial number on the receipt when you first purchase a device.

How to Find the Serial Number on an iPad

On the outside of the device

The serial number should be engraved on the back of the iPad.

On the About screen

  1. Turn on the device.
  2. Select Settings.
  3. Select General.
  4. Select About. The serial number will appear with the information about the iPad.

In iTunes

If the iPad is synched with the iTunes software on your computer, you will be able to find the serial number there.

  1. Start iTunes on a computer.
  2. Connect the iPad to the computer.
  3. Select Device in the upper right corner of the window.
  4. Select the Summary tab. The serial number will appear with the general information about the device.

Note: If you don't see your device, you may need to collapse the sidebar to create more room on the toolbar by choosing Hide sidebar in the View menu.

Other places to look

Additionally, a bar code with the serial number should be on the device's original packaging. Some retailers print the serial number on the receipt when you first purchase the device.

How to Find the Serial Number, IMEI Number and ESN on an iPhone

On the outside of the device

The location of identification numbers will vary by iPhone.

On iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus, the IMEI/MEID is on the SIM tray. The serial number can be found on the About screen. (See instructions below on how to access that.)

On iPhone 5s, iPhone 5c and iPhone 5, the IMEI is on the back of the device near the bottom. The MEID number uses the first 14 digits of the IMEI number, ignoring the last digit.

On iPhone 3G, iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4 (GSM model) and iPhone 4, the IMEI and serial number are on the SIM tray.

On the original iPhone, the serial and IMEI numbers are printed on the back of the device near the bottom.

Note: Some carriers use phones that don't have a serial number engraved on the outside surface. The serial number is available on those phones as part of the information displayed on the About screen. (See instructions for accessing that below.)

On the About screen

The serial number, IMEI, ESN and MEID numbers are all available on the iPhone's About screen. To find that information:

  1. Unlock your iPhone and select Settings.
  2. Select General.
  3. Select About. The ID numbers will appear on that screen (you might have to scroll down).

How to Find the Serial Number, IMEI Number and ESN on an Android Device

On the outside of the device

There will be some variation on where the serial/IMEI/ESN numbers show up on the outside of Android devices. Generally, the numbers are either on the back of the device or under the device's battery. If you have trouble finding them, visit the "support" area of the device manufacturer's website for help.

On the Settings screen

  1. Unlock your Android device and select the Settings tab.
  2. Select About device.
  3. Select Status. The device's IMEI/MEID numbers will appear on that screen (you might have to scroll down).

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