Just like you have a passport or ID with a unique number, smartphones have an IMEI. The IMEI is a 16-digit number that would be the identification card of your mobile, and you must know it for several reasons. In this article, we will review what IMEI is, what it is for, how you find it on your mobile, and what it exactly means. You will see that having this number on hand is more relevant than you think.
IMEI stands for International Mobile Equipment Identity, translated into Spanish as “ International Mobile Equipment Identity. It has a standard format used throughout the world and serves, in short, to identify any device wherever it is—the same as a passport. Let’s get to know him better.
What is the IMEI?
As we said before, it is the identification number of your mobile. Whenever you connect to the network, your smartphone sends its IMEI to the operator to know which phone is connecting, where it is connecting from, and, of course, who you are. This does not serve to spy on you, do not be confused, but its purpose is that the operator can know the device’s status. It does this through a database called EIR (Equipment Identity Register).
Almost all IMEIs in this world consists of 15 digits which, in turn, are divided into four differentiated sections. To understand it better, let’s use an example IMEI: 123456789087654.
- Type Allocation Code (TAC): it is composed of the first six digits (123456) and serves to identify the country of manufacture of the device.
- Final Assembly Code (FAC): composed of the next two digits (78), it is used to know the device’s manufacturer.
- Serial number (SNR): consists of the six digits that follow the FAC (908765).
- Spare: it is the verification digit (4), and it is used to ensure that the IMEI is correct. The latter can be omitted, which is why there are phones that have a 14-digit IMEI.
Now that you know what an IMEI is and how to create it, you will surely be interested in knowing what it is for and how to find it. Well, let’s get down to business.
What is the IMEI for?
Apart from identifying your phone throughout the world, the IMEI can be of use to you, especially in the event of theft. Have you ever heard that if your mobile is stolen, it is best to block it by IMEI? Surely yes, and now you will understand why it is good that your operator knows it. If your phone has been stolen, you have to call your operator and ask them to block it by IMEI. It will be made a nice paperweight, operational, yes, but without the possibility of connecting whatever they do to it.
“Be careful with this because it is a powerful weapon. When you lock the phone by IMEI, unlocking it can be a process of up to two months because that not only depends on your operator but all of them. Before doing this, make sure that the phone that has been stolen has been lost forever.
On the other hand, the IMEI is used to unlock the phone, whatever the brand or model it is, and you will use it with the company that you are going to use it. All this is very good, but to benefit from these options you will need to know it, and for this, you will have to know how to find it. This is easier than you think.
Where is the IMEI of a smartphone?
The IMEI of your smartphone is in two places: in the phone case and the terminal settings. In the case of my Samsung Galaxy S7 edge, the IMEI is in the second one, right next to the barcode. If you still have the box, your device came in, go for it and look at the label on the back or the bottom. As you can see, it has the fourth parts that we have seen before clearly differentiated.
If you have thrown the box, don’t worry, you can also find it on the phone. For this, you have two methods:
- Go to Settings> About phone> Status> IMEI information
- Dialing * # 06 # in your mobile calling application.
My recommendation, as a user whose mobile phone has been stolen more than once, is that you take a photo of the box in which the IMEI is seen or write it down somewhere that you always have at hand, such as a document from Google Drive, a notebook, a post-it or whatever you prefer. Having this number on hand is, as you can see, more important than it seems, and now you know everything about it!
Sharlene Meriel is an avid gamer with a knack for technology. He has been writing about the latest technologies for the past 5 years. His contribution in technology journalism has been noteworthy. He is also a day trader with interest in the Forex market.