Ever lost your phone? Well, if you or anyone you know has ever lost their phone, and tried tracing it, you might know the importance of the IMEI number. The Government of India recently launched the Central Equipment Identity Register (CEIR) that can track your lost/ stolen phone with just your smartphone’s IMEI mumber.
IMEI stands for International Mobile Equipment Identity and is a unique number assigned for every cellphone. It is usually found behind the battery. IMEI numbers of cellular phones connected to a GSM network are all stored in a database known as Equipment Identity Register (EIR). No two devices will have the same IMEI or MEID (for CDMA), therefore it is used in tracking lost or stolen cell phones.
However, we do not usually remember the IMEI number of our phones which can lead to enough trouble when we really need it. Don’t worry, you can quickly retrieve and record your phone’s IMEI or MEID number in a number of ways, depending on the device used by you:
1. Dialing a code: The first and quickest method to find the IMEI number is by dialing a code from your phone. You can retrieve the IMEI number of any phone by dialing the universal code *#06#. Once the code is dialed, you automatically get the number, without using the call or send button. Copy this number somewhere and keep it safe.
2. For Apple iPhones: The iPhone 5, 5C, 5S, and the original iPhone have the IMEI number engraved on the back of the phone, near the bottom. While IMEI number is all 15 digits, MEID number is first 14 digits. For iPhone 3G, 3GS, 4, or 4S, the IMEI/MEID number is printed on the SIM tray.
Otherwise, you can go to Settings > General > About > IMEI to get the number.
3. For Android phones: To get your IMEI/MEID number on Android mobile phones, go to Settings > About Phone > Status > IMEI number. Write this down somewhere.
4. Under the battery: For phones that have removable batteries, you can also note the number by removing the battery. For this, switch off your phone, open the back cover and take the battery out. The IMEI number is there on a sticker under the battery.
5. From packaging: You should always keep the packaged boxes safe for a reason. The box packaging has the IMEI printed on it. Try to look for it and note it down.
6. Using iTunes: Plug your iPhone into your computer and open iTunes. Go to iTunes > preferences tab (if you are using a Mac) or edit > preferences tab (on the PC version). Click on the devices button and go to Summary tab. Here, click on your phone number twice. Your IMEI should be visible after the second time.