How to recognize iPad: The iPad models available in stores are starting to be so many and choosing the right one to buy, or give to a loved one, is becoming more and more difficult. And if you are not a great connoisseur of Apple devices, the mission becomes even more difficult.
What do you think, then, if I give you a hand trying to easily explain how to recognize iPad ? Follow the instructions I am about to give you and I assure you that very few elements will be enough to understand which is the right iPad to buy. I already anticipate that there are various ways to do this: among other things, you can pay attention to the appearance of the iPad you are considering to know which model it is or you can trace this information from the IMEI code or the model code ( in this case, you must own the iPad or ask the seller for this information).
So, are you ready to find out how to recognize the various iPad models based on their characteristics or their identification codes? Yup? Well: make yourself comfortable, take all the time you need to concentrate on reading the next paragraphs, implement the “tips” that I will give you and you will see that once again you will be able to complete your “business” without major difficulties. Enjoy the reading!
Recognize iPad by its appearance
If you want to try to recognize an iPad by its appearance , you have to pay attention to some aesthetic details that distinguish the numerous versions and models of the famous tablet “made in Cupertino”, as well as the model code that appears on the body of the device. Let’s see, therefore, what are the main differences between the various iPad models marketed in recent years.
- 12.9 ″ iPad Pro (5th generation)– With a 1600 nit maximum brightness Liquid Retina XDR Mini LED display, HDR10 support and 1,000,000: 1 color contrast, the 12.9 ″ iPad Pro is the best iPad available right now. It hit the market at the end of April 2021 and the bright, sharp screen isn’t the only big news of this 5th generation. Apple has decided to insert the M1 chip that had always been used only for Macs in the device and to upgrade the RAM memory from the 6GB of the previous generation up to 16. This makes the iPad Pro 50% faster than in the past and a lot more performing in terms of image processing. The internal memory has also been increased and now, in addition to the 128, 256, 512 GB and 1TB denominations available in the old-gen, there is a new large 2TB denomination. Connections side, Thunderbolt 4 technology is added to USB-C by increasing the bandwidth by about 4 times and the module for 5G support is also inserted. Professionals and gamers will find LiDAR support for AR apps on cameras very useful, which allows for augmented reality image processing.
- iPad Pro 11 ” (3rd generation) – identical to the larger model and also available from the end of April 2021, the third generation of the iPad Pro 11″ differs only in the 11 “display and the lower price.
- 12.9 ″ iPad Pro (4th generation)– the novelties of this 4th generation of iPad Pro 12.9 are many starting from the RAM which reaches 6GB (2 more than the previous generation). This model, which arrived on the market in March 2020, is also the first to have a rear camera with a 12MP primary lens and a secondary 10MP lens, however, equipped with the ultra wide-angle lens and the ability to take pictures and shoot videos in 4K. Everything is optimized by the Apple A12Z Bionic processor which with the Octa-core GPU is much more powerful than the past generation and able to work with 4K materials. The display also evolves and features an IPS Liquid Retina LCD supported by the ProMotion system to reach a refresh rate of 120Hz and return smoother images. Finally, it is available as always in various memory sizes but the basic one goes from 256, 512GB and 1TB. However, the basic 64GB cut has been replaced with a 128GB one.
- iPad Pro 11 ″ (2nd generation) – the reduced model of the 12.9 version. It arrived on the market in March 2020 and, except for the size of the display and price, it is identical in all respects to the larger model.
- iPad Pro 12.9 ″ (third generation) – was marketed starting from the last part of 2018 in memory sizes of 64, 256, 512 GB and 1TB and in the Wi-Fi and Wi-Fi + Cellular models. Its identification code is A1876 (Wi-Fi only) or A2014 / A1895 (Wi-Fi + Cellular). It features the Smart Connector, the USB-C port, the Face ID and four speakers. The screen covers most of the front surface (iPhone X / Xs style) and the Home button is absent. Compatible with Apple Pencil and 2nd generation Smart Keyboard.
- iPad Pro 11 “ – is the only iPad model with an 11″ diagonal. It has all the characteristics of the “big brother”. The only substantial difference concerns, for obvious reasons, its overall size. Its identification codes are A1980 (Wi-Fi only) and A2013 / A1934 (Wi-Fi + Cellular). It is compatible with Apple Pencil and 2nd generation Smart Keyboard.
- iPad Pro 12.9 ″ (second generation) – was marketed starting from 2017 in memory sizes of 64, 256 and 512 GB and in the Wi-Fi and Wi-Fi + Cellular models. Its identification code is A1670 (Wi-Fi only) or A1671 (Wi-Fi + Cellular). It features the Smart Connector, Lightning Connector, Touch ID and four audio speakers. It is compatible with 1st generation Apple Pencil and Smart Keyboard.
- iPad Pro 10.5 ″ (second generation) – was marketed starting from 2017 in memory sizes of 64, 256 and 512 GB and in the Wi-Fi and Wi-Fi + Cellular models. Its identification code is A1701 (Wi-Fi only) or A1709 (Wi-Fi + Cellular). It features the Smart Connector, Lightning Connector, Touch ID and four speakers. It differs from all other iPad models due to the fact that it is the only one to have a 10.5 ″ diagonal and thinner side edges than any other iPad produced up to 2017. It is compatible with Apple Pencil and 1st Smart Keyboard. generation.
- iPad Pro 9.7 ″ – has been marketed since 2016 and now it can still be found on the market in memory sizes of 32, 128 and 256 GB, both in Wi-Fi and Wi-Fi + Cellular versions. Its identification code is A1673 (Wi-Fi only) or A1674 / A1675 (Wi-Fi + Cellular). It integrates the Smart Connector, the Lightning connector, the Touch ID and four speakers. It is compatible with 1st generation Apple Pencil and Smart Keyboard.
- iPad 12.9 ″ (first generation) – has been marketed since 2015 in memory sizes of 64, 256 and 512 GB in the Wi-Fi and Wi-Fi + Cellular models. Its identification code is A1584 (Wi-Fi only) or A1652 (Wi-Fi + Cellular). It features the Smart Connector, Lightning Connector, Touch ID and four audio speakers. It is compatible with 1st generation Apple Pencil and Smart Keyboard.
- iPad (sixth generation) – was marketed starting from 2018 in memory sizes of 32 and 128 GB, in the Wi-Fi and Wi-Fi + Cellular models. Its identification code is A1893 (Wi-Fi) or A1954 (Wi-Fi + Cellular). Its compatibility with the 1st generation Apple Pencil differentiates it from its predecessor, released in 2017. Its design is very reminiscent of the iPad Air 2, but is a little thicker.
- iPad (fifth generation) – was marketed starting from 2017 and is to all intents and purposes the predecessor of the sixth generation iPad, as it has practically the same characteristics as the latter, except for compatibility with the 1st generation Apple Pencil (which Apple introduced the following year). It is very reminiscent of the iPad Air 2, but is a little thicker.
- iPad Air 2 – was released towards the end of 2014 in memory sizes of 16, 32, 64 and 128 GB. Its identification code is A1566 on the Wi-Fi only model and A1567 on the Wi-Fi + Cellular model. It differs from the first generation iPad Air due to its reduced thickness and the presence of the Touch ID.
- iPad Air – was marketed between late 2013 and early 2014 in memory sizes of 16, 32, 64 and 128GB. Its identification code is A1474 on the Wi-Fi only model, A1475 on the Wi-Fi + Cellular model and A1476 on the Wi-Fi + Cellular (TD-LTE) model from early 2014. It differs from the iPad Air 2 due to the its greater thickness and the lack of Touch ID.
- iPad mini 4 – has been on the market since 2015 and has the same features as the iPad Air 2, except for the screen, which has a 7.9 ″ diagonal. Its identification code is A1538 on the Wi-Fi version and A1550 on the Wi-Fi + Cellular model.
For more information, I invite you to consult the official Apple website, where you can find a page with all the iPad models in comparison and another page with all the identification codes of the latter.
Recognize iPad by IMEI code
Another way to distinguish the various iPad models is to use the IMEI code which, in case you don’t know it, is a sort of “plate” that uniquely identifies a device. Once you have located your iPad’s IMEI number, you can know exactly which model it is. To find the IMEI of your device, you can resort to various solutions, as indicated below.
- Sales package – usually, the iPad’s IMEI code can be found on the back of its sales package, on a special label that identifies it with the wording IMEI / MEID .
- IOS Settings – another way to find the IMEI is to open the Settings app (the gray icon with gears located on the Home screen), tap on the General item and then on Info . Then you have to scroll through the displayed screen and locate the IMEI item .
- iTunes – if you want to go back to the IMEI of your iPad via iTunes, connect the tablet to the computer using the cable that was supplied to you, wait for iTunes to open (or start it yourself, if this does not happen automatically) and presses the iPad icon that appears at the top left. Then select the Summary tab on the left and locate the IMEI by pressing the Phone Number item .
After finding the IMEI code of your iPad, connected to this page of the Apple website, enter the IMEI code in the field below the entry Enter the “serial” number , enter the code shown in the image in the appropriate text field and click the Continue button . On the page that opens, you will find the name of the iPad model in your possession (eg iPad Air 2 Wi-Fi + Cellular ).
Recognize iPad by model number
Another way to recognize an iPad is to use its model number . This code, as easily understood, is used to easily identify the version and type of device in your possession. Here’s how you can spot it.
- IPad case – usually the model code is found on the rear case of the iPad, after the words Designed by Apple in California AssembLED in China and is indicated by the word Model Axxxx .
- Sales package – usually the model code of the iPad can also be found on the sales package, on the label on the back that bears the wording Part No.
- IOS Settings – Another way to find the model code is to open the Settings app (the gray gear icon located on the iOS Home screen) and then go to General> Info> Model .
After finding the model code, all you have to do is go to this page of the Apple site and scroll through it until you find the iPad that corresponds to the code in question.
Alternatively, you can contact the EveryMac.com site which allows you to trace the model of your device more immediately. Connected, therefore, to this page , type the model code of your iPad in the text field Enter Mac, iPod, iPhone or iPad Identifier and presses the Lookup button . In a few seconds, you will be able to know not only the name of the iPad model in your possession, but also its generic data sheet.
How to recognize stolen iPad
Have you bought an iPad from a private individual and have you suspected that it may be stolen? If so, you can try to recognize a stolen iPad by using its IMEI code or by checking its warranty, as outlined below.
- From IMEI – after recovering the IMEI of your iPad (I explained how to do this in one of the previous chapters ), connected to this Web page , type the code in question in the appropriate text field and press the Search button : so by doing so, you will be able to verify if there are any active blocks on the IMEI provided following a theft.
- From the warranty check – enter the serial number of your iPad on this page , enter the code shown in the image in the appropriate text field and press the Continue button . If there are discrepancies regarding the date of purchase of the product and the one that was indicated to you by the private person who sold it to you, you should be suspicious and investigate the matter.
For more information on how to recognize a stolen iPad, I invite you to read this guide: even if it is dedicated to iPhone, the information presented is generally valid for iPad as well.