Apple Serial Number: Why Is It Important

The Apple serial number is not just a string of digits and letters. It reveals a lot of useful information about your device, information you can’t obtain through any other means. The serial number shows the date and location of manufacture. It can be very helpful if you need to find spare parts or you need to track down the factory your device came from.

How to Check Production Date of Apple Devices – Find Production Date Based on Serial Number [Video]

Video uploaded by HardReset.Info on January 20, 2023.

Where can I find this serial number?

apple serial number main - Apple Serial Number: Why Is It Important
Find the serial number for your Apple TV.

The serial number is printed on the device. If it’s scratched or worn, look up the number up in your device’s settings menu. You can also find it printed on the box in which the device came.

There are tons of online tools that can help look up the serial number. Why can’t I just use one of those?

First of all, you may not always find yourself in a place where you have internet connection, or have slow service. Secondly, every software can have bugs from time to time and can display incorrect info. Just download the tables and compare the codes yourself.

You might get a bit overwhelmed and think it may be complicated to figure this out. Trust us… it is very simple!

This is the 12-character alphanumeric serial number used by Apple after 2010. Let’s put it this way:




Of course, the real serial number looks differently, but I used these letters on purpose.

  • The first three digits represent the manufacturing Location.
  • The next two indicate the year and week of manufacture.
  • The next three digits stand for a unique identifier.
  • The last four digits represent the model number.

The manufacturing location is represented with the alphanumeric code. The complete list of factories is hard to obtain, but most locations are known. Usually, the China-based factories are marked both with letters and digits while other Asian, American, and European factories are given alphabetical codes often after the first letters of the place. The letters RM stand for ReManufactured or refurbished.

Code Factory
FC Fountain Colorado, USA
F Fremont, California, USA
RN Mexico
CK Cork, Ireland
VM Foxconn, Pardubice, Czech Republic
SG, E Singapore
MB Malaysia
PT, CY Korea
EE, QT, UV Taiwan
FK, F1, F2 Foxconn – Zhengzhou, China
W8 Shanghai China
DL, DM Foxconn – China
DN Foxconn, Chengdu, China
YM, 7J Hon Hai/Foxconn, China
1C, 4H, WQ, F7 China
C0 Tech Com – Quanta Computer Subsidiary, China
C3 Foxxcon, Shenzhen, China
C7 Pentragon, Changhai, China
RM Refurbished/remanufactured

Apple Facility of Manufacture Codes


The year of manufacture is also encrypted by an alphabet code starting with the letter C. Apple splits the year in halves because the company is famous for introducing silent upgrades every six months or so. Also, the changes in the downstream supply chain can occur. So, the fourth character of the serial number shows the year the device was manufactured in, and if it was in the first or second half of the year. The range loops every decade. For example, H can stand for the first half of 2012 and it will represent the first half of 2022 as well. See the table below.

Code Release
C 2010 (1st half)
D 2010 (2nd half)
F 2011 (1st half)
G 2011 (2nd half)
H 2012 (1st half)
J 2012 (2nd half)
K 2013 (1st half)
L 2013 (2nd half)
M 2014 (1st half)
N 2014 (2nd half)
P 2015 (1st half)
Q 2015 (2nd half)
R 2016 (1st half)
S 2016 (2nd half)
T 2017 (1st half)
V 2017 (2nd half)
W 2018 (1st half)
X 2018 (2nd half)
Y 2019 (1st half)
Z 2019 (2nd half)

Apple Date of Manufacture Codes


The fifth character stands for the week in which the device was manufactured. Yes, Apple is very meticulous about it. Here the company uses both letters and digits. The first through ninth weeks are represented with digits from 1 through 9. For the tenth through twenty-seventh weeks the letters C through Y are used, excluding the vowels A, E, I, O, and U, and the letter S.

Therefore, if the year is C and the week is F, then your device was produced in the first half of the year 2010, week 12. H9 gives us the first half of the year 2012, week 9.

For devices manufactured in the second half of the year it’s a bit tricky. The weeks are encrypted with digits starting with 28 through 52.

Each Apple device manufactured in the same location and during the same week of the same year get a unique identifier that is represented with the next three digits. It’s starting to look more and more like a person’s ID, isn’t it? Let’s see what the last digits can tell us.

The last four digits of the serial number represent the product’s model. The number of models of Apple products is too huge to list their codes in one table, so here you have to search for them online. It’s an easy thing to do.

The iPhones serial numbers also contain information about the device’s color and storage capacity. For Apple smartphones released after 2010, the information is encrypted in the final four digits of the serial number. The ninth, tenth, and eleventh characters represent the iPhone’s model and color, and the last character represents the iPhone’s storage capacity.

Apple product manufacturing date 2010 to 2021

The following table lists the production dates of Apple electronic products. All you have to do is find the characters in the serial number that define the date of manufacture. Using the table, you can easily determine the date of manufacture of your device.

apple serial number why is it important 2010 2021 - Apple Serial Number: Why Is It Important

I’ve got an iPhone 4 released before 2010. It has a 10-digit serial number. What does it mean?

apple serial number check - Apple Serial Number: Why Is It Important
You can always check serial number of your iPhone in About menu.

The old serial number looks like this:




  • F is the manufacturing Location
  • Y is the Year of release
  • WW is the Week
  • III is the model Identificator
  • CC is the Color
  • M is the storage Memory

Naturally, when the second decade of the 21st century began and the year had to be put down with two digits instead of one, Apple overhauled the serial number conception.



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