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The easiest way to find out if your iPhone is New, Refurbished, or Replacement

1 Mins read

Picture this! You are planning on buying a new iPhone and you don’t want to end up with a refurbished phone or a replacement and this is because you have to rely on a third party to sell you the new iPhone. 

Most people who encounter this uncertainty are mostly in countries where Apple doesn’t have a physical store and shipping from the Apple online store is a nightmare. Everything about a refurbished and replaced iPhone seems to be plausible and is hard to distinguish. 

Third parties will simply buy a refurbished iPhone, make a replica of the original box and papers, and sell it as brand new because nobody will tell the difference. However, Apple does have a way to tell if a phone is refurbished, new or replaced. 

Here’s how you can decode a device model prefix to determine the original status of an iPhone;

  • Open the “Settings” app on the iPhone
  • Go to “General” and then go to “About”
  • Look for “Model” and then read the model identifier next to that text, it will look something like “MN572LL/A” (if you tap it as well, you’ll see the batch number), the first character will let you know if the device is new, refurbished, replacement, or personalized:

M – Brand new device, meaning the device was purchased new

F – Refurbished device, meaning the device has been through refurbishing process

N – Replacement device, meaning the originally bought device was replaced by this model likely due to a service request

P – Personalized device with engraving, meaning the device was customized with an engraving on purchase. 

Source: Apple. 

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