Buying a used 4S, but model/part numbers and GB on box don't match...

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by trife, Apr 18, 2012.

  1. trife macrumors 6502

    trife

    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2012
    #1
    Ok, so I'm looking for a used 4S and found a decent deal. The only problem is that the part number (MD269LL/A) and model number (A1387) don't match the given storage capacity (32 GB) on the label of the iPhone box.

    A quick Internet search shows that with those numbers it should be a 64 GB iPhone, correct?

    Has anyone seen this before? I looked up the IMEI number and it checks out, but I find that real fishy. I asked the seller whether it was 32 or 64 and he said that he was told it was 32. Claims he never used it since it was a gift and he's on Tmobile and obviously without a micro SIM he can't turn it on and check. My gut says to avoid the deal but he also has great feedback.

    Thoughts? Thanks!
     
  2. r.j.s Moderator emeritus

    r.j.s

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2007
    Location:
    Texas
    #2
    Might just be a different box - I've had to do that when I switched from Sprint to AT&T (I couldn't find the Sprint box, so I put the phone in the AT&T box to ship it).
     
  3. andyx3x macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2011
  4. r.j.s Moderator emeritus

    r.j.s

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2007
    Location:
    Texas
    #4
    IIRC, refurbs come in a plain black box.
     
  5. trife thread starter macrumors 6502

    trife

    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2012
    #5
    Ahh, didn't think that....good call. I'll have to ask the guy. Like I said, everything else seems to check out, but I guess the skeptic in me is wary.
     
  6. macingman macrumors 68020

    macingman

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2011
    #6
    I would suggest if you are skeptical you should find a seller which you are 100% confident in. There are so many iPhones for sale and there quite expensive so it's not worth taking the risk IMO.
     
  7. daaneel, Apr 18, 2012
    Last edited: Apr 18, 2012

    daaneel macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2011
    #7
    Do you know the serial number?

    If you do that can be very helpful in finding out the info..
     
  8. andyx3x macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2011
    #8
    I know, but people generally will sell a refurb on Ebay or Craigslist with a regular iPhone box, not the black box. That is, if they have a regular box.
     
  9. trife thread starter macrumors 6502

    trife

    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2012
    #9
    Indeed I do. He posted a clear as day shot of the box label w/ all that info.

    What can I find out w/ that info? Sorry for the n00b questions.
     
  10. andyx3x macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2011
    #10
    Go to apple.com/support and then choose the "check your service and coverage option" and it will tell you the warranty expiration date. That is a year from the purchase date.

    Another thing you might want to do is call Apple support and give them the serial number and just ask them if the device has ever been swapped out. That could explain the different box.

    I called them last week about a phone that I was thinking about buying on Craigslist and they couldn't give me a lot of info but they did tell me the phone has been swapped out.
     
  11. nwmtnbiker macrumors 68000

    nwmtnbiker

    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2011
    Location:
    Fidalgo Island
    #11
    I have always gone to Apple and picked up a refurbished before selling on craigslist then sold in original box. I've never had a problem but also added in ad what I've done.
     
  12. klo-mac macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2011
    #12
    Wirelessly posted

    Are you buying for eBay? There are risks which you should keep. If price justify the risk go for it.
     
  13. terraphantm macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2009
    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    #13
    I've used boxes for different devices when I couldn't find the original. I sold my old 3GS in y friend's box. I did let the buyer know up front that the box won't match the devices though.
     
  14. taedouni macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2011
    Location:
    California
    #14
    Sheesh if you are buying an iPhone that is used from a third party seller be happy you get any type of box. It's used and you're buying it cheap, don't expect the original box.
     
  15. trife thread starter macrumors 6502

    trife

    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2012
    #15
    Wow, I didn't know that it was possible to call Apple and get info on a random phone via the serial number. I'll give that a try to see what info I can come up with. And yeah, I already checked the warranty--good until October 2012. Just in time for the next iPhone.

    ----------

    I hear you on that, but I guess my main concern was maybe a fraudulent box tag. Seems weird that the model/part numbers ON THE LABEL don't match the GB capacity on the exact same label.

    I'm a big sneaker guy and one of the best ways to spot a fraud is the box label--usually if something is off you already know what you're dealing with. Just wasn't sure if this could be the same.
     
  16. lordofthereef macrumors G4

    lordofthereef

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2011
    Location:
    Boston, MA
    #16
    The idea here is "proof" of original ownership. If I were to steal an iPhone, it would be impossible for me to sell it with its original box (unless I robbed you on the way out of the store or something LOL). having a box with serial numbers that match is pretty good insurance that you don't have a stolen item on your hands.
     
  17. andyx3x macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2011
    #17
    Most people don't do that though. They will just say brand new iPhone.
     
  18. daaneel macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2011
    #18
    With the serial number you can find the exact model, make, production date, size, etc of the iPhone.

    Visit the url below and just type in the serial number and hit enter. It will display all the info you need without having to call Apple or anything
    http://www.chipmunk.nl/klantenservice/applemodel.html

    Preferably you might want him to take a picture of the serial number as it is displayed on the SIM tray of the iPhone or on the about page. Because I think you mentioned that you are not sure if the box is for that iPhone .. therefore the box label might not be the right box for the iPhone he is selling you.
     
  19. Jordan921 macrumors 68040

    Jordan921

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2010
    Location:
    Bay Area
    #19
    I understand the importance of the serial numbers to match, but lots of times people get their iPhones replaced at the apple store so they won't match.
     
  20. trife thread starter macrumors 6502

    trife

    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2012
    #20
    Thanks for all the opinions folks...appreciate it.

    Fortunately, I was able to find an unlocked 32 GB 4S locally for an even better price, so I'm rolling with the sure thing instead of chancing it online.

    If I wasn't so cheap, I'd pony up the $$ and just get a factory unlocked 4S from Apple, but it hurts my soul to think about paying $700 minimum for a new phone. :eek:

    Thanks again though.
     
  21. terraphantm macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2009
    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    #21
    It's not sure fire though. Apple replacements never carry the same serial, and they don't give the stickers to put on the old box anymore. I haven't actually had any buyers verify the serials match on my old iphones either
     
  22. MistahMumford macrumors 6502

    MistahMumford

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2011
    Location:
    SC
    #22
    It's best to have them send you a screenshot of the About page out of settings. Then take the IMEI on checkesnfree.com. Also call the service provider. Bought and sold tons of phones on Craigslist and not a dud in the bunch!
     
  23. lordofthereef macrumors G4

    lordofthereef

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2011
    Location:
    Boston, MA
    #23
    Nobody said it was sure fire, but it's a safer bet. If I have a box with a serial number that matches my phone, it is probably legit. Just because they DON'T match doesn't mean they are NOT legit, but it's pretty tough to steal a phone, box and all with matching serials.
     
  24. Beenblacklisted macrumors 6502

    Beenblacklisted

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2011
    Location:
    Miami,Fl
    #24
    if you can physically get your hands on it check the sim tray, or if you can see it turn it on and hit the italicized i on the main screen it should show relevant imei info.
     

Share This Page