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How to Tell What iPod Touch Model You Have

Updated on March 24, 2012
Max Dalton profile image

Max holds a BS in Mass Communications from SIU and an MA in Communication from U of I, and is pursuing an MBA from Webster University.

Introduction

Knowing what iPod Touch model you have is important so you know what hardware is compatible with your device and what version of the iOS operating system its capable of running. For example, because the physical characteristics of each iPod Touch is slightly different, knowing your model will help you pick an appropriate case. Also, older iPod Touch models only support up to a certain version of the iOS operating system. For example, the original iPod Touch only supports up to iOS 3.1.3 and the second-generation iPod Touch only supports up to iOS 4.2.1.

The antenna on the back of the original iPod Touch covered the entire upper-left corner.
The antenna on the back of the original iPod Touch covered the entire upper-left corner. | Source

First-Generation iPod Touch

The most noticeable physical difference between the first-generation iPod Touch and all of the other iPod Touch models is the lack of a physical volume control along the left edge of the device. Turn the first-generation iPod Touch over so you can see the back of the device and look at the Apple logo on the upper half of the device and the text on the lower half of the device. The logo and text will be silver, whereas on the second- and fourth-generation iPod Touch, the logo and text will be dark gray. Also, the black Wi-Fi antenna on the upper-left corner of the back of the device will cover the entire corner, whereas the antenna on the second- and third-generation devices is an oval shape that doesn't cover the entire corner, and the antenna on the fourth-generation iPod Touch isn't visible.

The second-generation iPod Touch has a model number of A1288.
The second-generation iPod Touch has a model number of A1288. | Source

Second-Generation iPod Touch

The second-generation iPod Touch is the first iPod Touch model to feature the volume control on its left edge. The device also features an oval-shaped Wi-Fi antenna in the upper-left corner of the back of the device, and the iPod logo and text on the lower half of the back of the device is dark gray and not silver. The second-generation iPod Touch is only available in 8, 16 and 32 GB models, and the model number for second-generation iPod Touch devices is A1288. Both the model number and the storage capacity of your device can be found in the text on the lower half of the back of the device.

The third-generation iPod Touch is only available in 16 and 32 GB models.
The third-generation iPod Touch is only available in 16 and 32 GB models. | Source

Third-Generation iPod Touch

The third-generation iPod Touch is very similar to the second-generation iPod Touch, with both having an oval-shaped Wi-Fi antenna on the back and a volume rocker on the left edge. However, there are a few physical characteristics you can look at to differentiate the two devices. The logo and text on the back of the third-generation iPod Touch is silver and not dark gray, and the model number associated with the third-generation iPod Touch is A1318; both of these numbers can be found in the text on the lower half of the back of the device. Also, the third-generation iPod Touch is only available with either 32 or 64 GB of storage space.

The fourth-generation iPod Touch doesn't have a visible Wi-Fi antenna on the back.
The fourth-generation iPod Touch doesn't have a visible Wi-Fi antenna on the back. | Source

Fourth-Generation iPod Touch

The fourth-generation iPod Touch is different from the three previous models in a number of ways. First, there is no Wi-Fi antenna on the back of the device, and in the location where the antenna is typically located is instead a camera. Another camera is also located just above the touch screen on the front of the device. Additionally, an external speaker is located along the bottom edge of the device next to the 30-pin connector; the fourth-generation iPod Touch is the only model of the device with an external speaker. Finally, the fourth-generation iPod Touch is the only model to be available in either black or white.

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    • rebeccamealey profile image

      Rebecca Mealey 5 years ago from Northeastern Georgia, USA

      Your explanations are so clear and concise!Technology changes so quickly, these type articles should really help people!

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