Get the latest stories, news, and advice from Turbo!

What’s The Difference Between MEID vs IMEI?



We all go through the struggle of losing our cell phone. Often, cell phone users don’t know how to locate their cell phone and don’t take the necessary steps beforehand by installing tracking apps, or enabling certain phone settings that can. One of these precautions includes knowing your specific cell phone IMEI or MEID number, and having a MEID or IMEI tracker app already installed. In the event you misplaced your phone, you can use the IMEI or MEID number (with a tracker app) to find your mobile phone.

What Is IMEI?

An International Mobile Station Equipment Identity (IMEI) number is a 15-digit number which is different with every smartphone. It is a way to uniquely identify a specific iPhone or Android, even yours. Mobile phones that use a Global System for Mobile Communication (GSM) system and have AT&T or T-Mobile cellular plans have an IMEI number.

What Is MEID?

Mobile Equipment Identifier (MEID) is also commonly known as an Electric Serial Number (ESN). MEID is a unique 14-digit number that is a unique identifier of a specific cell phone. For easy remembering, a phone’s MEID number is a phone’s IMEI number minus the last digit if it has both. Any phones that use the Code Division Multiple Access (CDMA) system and have Sprint, Verizon, or U.S. Cellular cellular plans have an MEID number.

The Difference Between MEID vs IMEI

So, now that you know what IMEI and MEID is, what’s the difference?

    • All phones don’t always have both an IMEI or MEID number. An IMEI number is always on GSM system devices that use AT&T and T-Mobile carrier. A MEID number is always on CDMA system devices that use Verizon, U.S. Cellular, or Sprint carriers.
    • IMEI is a 14-digit number while MEID is a 15-digit number.
    • The location of an IMEI and MEID number will differ depending on the phone type and manufacturer.

How To Locate Your Phone’s IMEI and MEID Number

For the how-to steps we include below, we used a Samsung Galaxy Android phone and an iPhone X. In general, you can usually find a phone’s IMEI or MEID by opening up the phone back and looking at the battery label, or by looking at the back of the phone. Make sure you turn off your phone before doing this.

As stated before, phones may have both an IMEI and MEID number, or just one of those. However, the process to find them on a phone is the same on both iPhone and Android devices. Below, are our straightforward steps to locate your iPhone or Android’s IMEI or MEID number.

The *#06# Tactic:

On most mobile phones, excluding those using Verizon, you can easily look up your phone’s unique IMEI or MEID number using this insider tactic.

    • Go To your phone’s Phone app or dial pad.
    • Enter *#06#
    • Press the call button.
    • Your phone’s IMEI or MEID number should pop up on the screen.
    • Write your unique number down or take a screenshot.

IMEI/MEID On iPhone:

    • Go to your iPhone Settings.
    • Choose General.
    • Click on About.
    • Scroll down to IMEI or MEID and write down your number.

IMEI/MEID On Android:

    • Navigate to your Settings.
    • Go to and click on About Phone.
    • Scroll and write down your IMEI or MEID number.

That’s everything there is to know about the difference between IMEI vs MEID and how to locate it on your mobile device. Know your phone’s IMEI or MEID number and install a tracker app before your phone is lost or stolen. This will make the process of finding it much easier.  

Related Post: What Are Some Ways To Track My Phone?

1 Comment

Comments are closed.