How to Check if an iPhone is Original Using the Serial Number


In today’s world, it is essential to ensure that the products we purchase are authentic, especially for expensive gadgets like the iPhone. With the rise of refurbished and fake devices, verifying the authenticity of an iPhone has become increasingly important.

A number of methods are available online to check if the iPhone is original or not, but still many novice buyers don’t know about it.

So, let me show you how to check if your iPhone is original using the serial number, making it more informative and effective for users.

Difference Between Serial Numbers and Model Numbers

Before diving into the methods, it’s crucial to understand the difference between serial numbers and model numbers.

Serial numbers are unique identifiers assigned to individual devices by the manufacturer.

Model numbers, on the other hand, represent the specific model of a device and are not unique to each unit.

Method 1: Checking Service and Support Coverage with Serial Number

Step 1: Find the Serial Number

The first method to check the authenticity of your iPhone is by verifying the service and support coverage using the device’s serial number. Here’s how to find your iPhone’s serial number:

  1. Go to Settings on your iPhone.
  2. Tap on General.
  3. Select About.

You will find the serial number listed on the About page.

Step 2: Verify the Warranty Status

Once you have the serial number, follow these steps to check the warranty status of your iPhone:

  1. Visit
  2. Enter the serial number.
  3. Enter the code displayed on the page.

This method will help you determine if the iPhone is under warranty, as claimed by the seller. If the device is not covered under warranty or if the warranty period is shorter than expected, it might indicate that the iPhone is not original or has been tampered with.

Method 2: Using the Model Number

Step 1: Find the Model Number

Another method to check your iPhone’s authenticity, recommended by many experts, is examining the model number. To find your iPhone’s model number, follow these steps:

  1. Go to Settings.
  2. Tap on General.
  3. Select About.

You will find the model number listed on the About page, right below the serial number.

Step 2: Understand Model Number Prefixes

The iPhone model number typically starts with one of four letters, each representing a different type of device. Here’s what the starting letters indicate:

  • M: If your model number begins with an “M,” it means your iPhone is a new device purchased from an Apple Store Online or an Apple Retail Store. This is the ideal situation for most buyers who are expecting a brand-new iPhone.
  • F: A model number starting with “F” indicates that your iPhone is a refurbished device. Refurbished devices are usually sold at a lower price, but they have been restored to function like new. If you didn’t expect to receive a refurbished iPhone and paid the full price for a new one, it’s advisable to return it.
  • N: If the model number begins with an “N,” it means your iPhone is a replacement device. Replacement devices are provided by Apple or Apple Authorized Service Centers due to issues with the original phone. While these devices are often in good condition, it’s essential to know if you’re buying a replacement device rather than a new one.
  • P: The rarest of the four, a model number starting with “P” signifies a personalized device. This means the device has a personalized engraving. Personalized devices are not necessarily problematic, but it’s important to be aware of the engraving if you’re planning to resell the device.

Final Thoughts

By checking the service and support coverage with your iPhone’s serial number and analyzing the model number, you can confidently determine if your iPhone is original, refurbished, or fake.

Always make sure to verify the authenticity of your device to protect your investment and ensure you get what you paid for.

Remember that purchasing from reputable sellers and authorized dealers will significantly reduce the risk of acquiring a counterfeit or refurbished device without your knowledge.

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By Betty
She started her career as a journalist and ended up being a good content writer at Since she has journalism quality, she loves to be in trend by collecting and writing on the latest iPhone, iPad, Mac, or other Apple product related stuff on the website. She has little birds everywhere.
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