How to Find an Apple Serial Number & IMEI with or without Your iPhone or iPad (iOS 15 Update)

Wondering how to look up the IMEI and serial number on your iPhone and iPad? We'll show you how.

Have you ever needed your iPhone serial number, iPhone IMEI, iPad serial number, or iPad IMEI and realized you had no idea how to find it? We'll go over how to do an iPad or iPhone serial number check and cover how to do an IMEI lookup. You can find your iPad and iPhone IMEI and serial number with or without your phone or tablet, even if your device isn't working. Read on to learn more.

Related: Easiest Way to Know Your iPhone Model (All iPhone Models, Numbers & Generations) 

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What Is an IMEI & Apple Serial Number?

If you need to find your iPhone serial number, iPhone IMEI, iPad serial number, or iPad IMEI, here are all the ways to look up the number you need. Sometimes you need your iPhone IMEI number when you're wondering, "is my phone unlocked"? Other times you may need to do an iPhone or iPad serial number lookup before you contact Apple for support, or when filling out registration and support forms from Apple or your insurance company.  Let's get started learning what these Apple serial numbers and IMEI numbers are for, and how to find them when you need them.

Apple Serial Number: What Does an iPad or iPhone Serial Number Mean & When Do We Need to Do a Lookup?

The serial number on your iPhone is a unique string of digits that identifies your device and contains a wealth of information if you know how to decode it. Everything from the location of the factory where your phone was produced, as well as the date of production, to the model, the storage capacity, and even the color. You may need to do an iPhone serial number lookup when you call Apple for support, or to insure your iPhone. Here's a fun link to follow if you'd like to learn more about how to decode the serial number on your device

Your iPad & iPhone IMEI: What Is an IMEI Number & When Do We Need to Do an IMEI Check?

IMEI stands for International Mobile Equipment Identity. Your cell phone carrier uses your iPhone IMEI and SIM card to link your phone to their network. You'll rarely need your iPhone IMEI number, but you can use your iPhone IMEI number as an alternate to your iPhone serial number when you call Apple for support. You may also need your IMEI number if you want to unlock your iPhone from your current carrier and transfer cell service to a new carrier.

How to Find an iPhone Serial Number & IMEI If You Have Your Phone & It's Working

If you have an iPhone 5 or later, here's how to find your iPhone serial number:

  1. Open the Settings app.

  2. Tap General.

  3. Tap About.

  4. Here you'll see your iPhone's Serial Number.

    iphone serial number in about iphone settings
  5. Scroll a bit further down the page, and you'll see your iPhone's IMEI number.

    iphone imei number in about section of general iphone settings

How to Find an iPad Serial Number & iPad IMEI

You can follow the same steps as above to find your iPad's serial and IMEI numbers. Just open the Settings app and tap About to find the info you need. You can also look on the back of your iPad, iPad Pro, or iPod touch to find the serial number for the device. If you have an iPad that's a Wi-Fi and cellular model, you'll also see the IMEI.

ipad serial number and imei number

How to Find IMEI & Serial Number for iPad or iPhone Using a Mac

For older Macs (macOS Mojave or earlier), follow the steps directly below to do to an Apple serial check or IMEI lookup on your Mac. For newer Macs (macOS Catalina 10.15 or later), you will need to do an IMEI and Apple serial lookup using Finder. 

Find an iPhone Serial Number, iPhone IMEI Number & iPad IMEI Number with iTunes 

Apple is phasing out iTunes and replacing it with Apple Music, Apple Podcasts, and Apple TV. If your Mac is running macOS Mojave or earlier, you can still use iTunes to find the information you need. If you're in the habit of regularly backing up your iPhone to iTunes, it's a great way to keep a local backup should you need to restore your iPhone. iTunes also comes in handy if you need your iPhone's serial number but don't have your iPhone with you. If your Mac is running macOS Catalina 10.15 or later, you'll need to use Finder as shown in the section below. For older Macs, all you need to do is:

  1. Connect your iPhone or iPad to your computer.
  2. Open iTunes on a computer that you've backed up your iPhone or iPad to if you're using a PC or a Mac running macOS Mojave or earlier.
  3. In the iTunes menu, click Preferences.

    lookup apple serial number with itunes
  4. Click Devices on the top of the window that pops up.
  5. You'll see your iPhone or iPad there, along with any other devices you've backed up to iTunes. 

    find apple serial number with itunes
  6. Hover your mouse over your iPhone or iPad, and you'll see a list of data about your phone, including its serial number and IMEI number. 

    find iphone serial number with itunes

Find an iPhone Serial Number, iPhone IMEI Number & iPad IMEI Number with Finder

If your Mac is running macOS Catalina 10.15 or later, you'll need to use Finder to do an Apple serial number lookup or do an iPhone or iPad IMEI check. Here's how to find the IMEI number or the serial number on your device:

  1. Open Finder if you're running macOS Catalina 10.15 or later. 
  2. Find and click on your iPhone or iPad under Locations in the sidebar. 

    click on your iPhone under Locations in the Finder
  3. Click on the name of your iPhone or iPad model, and you'll see your iPad or iPhone serial number.

     click on name of iphone to reveal serial number
  4. Click your iPad (cellular model) or iPhone serial number, and you'll see your IMEI number. 

    find your iphone imei in finder under iphone name

How to Find an iPhone Serial Number If You Have Your Phone, but It Won’t Turn On

If you need to know how to find an old iPhone serial number, and if you have the phone with you but can't get it to turn on, it's an easy, one-step process. We'll also show you how to find the IMEI on an iPhone; this is the way to go if you have a phone older than the iPhone 4S.

How to Find an Old iPhone Serial Number & IMEI (for an Old iPhone)

serial number

If you have an old iPhone, including the iPhone 3G, 3GS, 4 (GSM), or 4s, just pop open the SIM tray, and you'll see your iPhone serial number and IMEI etched into the back of the tray.

How to Find the IMEI on an iPhone (for a Newer iPhone)

For phones after the 4S, the iPhone serial number is no longer etched separately on the SIM tray. Not to worry, though, you'll see the iPhone IMEI number engraved on the back of the tray, and Apple accepts this number as well, so you're good to go!

How to Find an iPhone Serial Number without the Phone

If you need your iPhone serial number but don't have your phone in hand, you still have options. 

How to Find an iPhone Serial Number on the iPhone Packaging

iphone serial number check

I always like to save the boxes my Apple products come in, in case I want to sell or give them away later. It turns out this is a good habit because there's an easy way to find your iPhone serial number without your phone; you'll just need your iPhone's original packaging. All you need to do to find your iPhone serial number on its original packaging is to look for the barcode sticker; the serial number is right there! If you still have your original Apple invoice or receipt, the serial number will be there as well.

Use Your Apple ID to Find Your iPhone Serial Number

This method won't work if you have two-factor authentication set up for your Apple ID account, the reason being that a code is sent to your iPhone to verify that it's ok to log in with your Apple ID from another device. If you don't have access to your iPhone, you can't retrieve this code! If you have access to another device, but don't have your phone, just sign in to your Apple ID to find your iPhone's serial number.

Log in with your Apple ID with this link.

  1. You'll see a page of information about your account; click on your iPhone in the Devices section.

    serial number check
  2. You'll see a list of basic information about your iPhone, including its serial number.

    number location 

    Still Need Help? Contact Apple

    If you still haven't been able to find your iPhone's serial number, contact Apple, and they'll be happy to help you solve your problem.

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    Author Details

    Leanne Hays's picture

    Author Details

    Leanne Hays

    Leanne Hays is an SEO Content Strategist and Feature Writer at iPhone Life, and has written hundreds of in-depth how-to and troubleshooting articles. She's a former Associate Editor for iPhone Life magazine, and has written for the Iowa Source, as well as web content for education marketing. Leanne has an associate's degree in education, with a focus on curriculum development, as well as a bachelor's degree in science. She has over nine years of experience with SEO, social media management, and web development and writing. Despite years of web work, Leanne is by no means an early adapter; she's only owned a smartphone for five years, which makes her highly sympathetic to the learning curve of new iPhone owners. She enjoys making reader's lives easier and putting her education experience to work by walking them through the most practical ways to use Apple devices, step-by-step.

    In off-work hours, Leanne is a mother of two, homesteader, audiobook fanatic, musician, and learning enthusiast.