Smart-phones come with a price. In mean, buying one really shakes your pocket off. In estimation, a new, reliable smartphone costs you nothing short of 1000$. Unless there are discounts and giveaways, new iPhone, or android phones can cost you a fortune. As a result, people find refurbished phones a great deal. So, what is a refurbished phone?
Many people give refurbished phone less credit or value as they assume is just a normal used or second-hand phone. A refurbished phone generally means a pre-owned phone that was returned to the manufacturer or vendor due to default, for repair and resale. However, they are normally tested and checked thoroughly for any other fault before put back for sale. This makes them more effective, high quality, and fully certified compared to second-hand phones. The phones are fully functional but less costly, thus worth investing in. For a better understanding of refurbished phones, follow our guide closely.
Differentiate Between Used And Refurbished Phones
As stated above, used and refurbished phones are two different entities. They are similar in the sense that they were previously owned by someone else. However, their differences are dominant over similarities. Below are their detailed differences.
- Refurbished phones are phones that were returned to the original manufacturer for repair or upgrade then put back on the market for resale. They are normally returned due to mechanical failure or breakage. They can also be returned in case the user changed their mind within the given warranty. Either way, they first go through the manufacturer before resale. On the other hand, used phones do not necessarily go back to the manufacturer. Instead, they are sold directly from the previous user.
- With refurbished phones, quality is guaranteed compared to used phones. How? Refurbished phones go through manufacturers’ hands, where they have checked any possible defects, fixed and verified to work properly before releasing to the market. They are therefore as good as brand new phones. However, some may be left with moderate evidence of use, like marks or scratches that do not interfere with your phone’s functionality. On the other hand, ‘used’ phones do not guarantee quality. This is because they do not pass through any dealer for a thorough checkup. These phones are just sold out from the previous owner to the new owner without a functionality checkup. They are thus riskier than refurbished phones.
- Refurbished phones are costly than used phones. As mentioned above, refurbished phones are as good as brand new. These phones go through a very detailed repair process that makes them more costly than ‘used’ phones. They also come with a warranty. ‘Used’ phones are cheaper because they do not go through any serious repair process. As a buyer, you just close a deal with the original owner and acquire your phone at an affordable price.
Refurbished Phone Upgrading
Once refurbished, every phone is given a grade to rank them as per its condition. However, you should note that different networks use different criteria to grade these phones. Some use grade 1, grade 2, and grade 3 criteria. Others prefer the ‘perfect’, ‘most perfect’, and ‘perfectly fine’ grading. However, most networks prefer the grade A, B, C, D criteria as expounded below;
- Grade A : This is basically the best grade anyone would consider. I would describe it as good as new. More often than not, this grade entails phones that are returned to the manufacturers within the one month cooling off period. They barely have any signs of tear/ wear.
- Grade B : This grade entails phones that are used slightly then returned for repair after damage. They are equally good but not as good as grade A. In most cases, they have tiny scratches or evidence of previous use.
- Grade C : These phones are normally used for a longer time compared to grade B. they are cheaper and they normally have at least 5 or more scratches/ marks.
- Grade D : These are mostly broken phones that are not repaired at all. These phones are sold to users who can repair themselves. They are the cheapest of all phones
Refurbished Phones; Pros and Cons
- Depending on where you buy your refurbished handsets from, you will save more money as opposed to buying a new phone.
- The phone comes in a complete package of accessories just like a brand new phone. It comes with a charger, headphones and USB cable.
- Some sellers offer up to a whole year warranty on their refurbished phones.
- The vast majority of refurbished phones look very pristine in comparison to normal second hand phones
- Most of the refurbished gadgets don’t come with their original packaging.
- At times when you buy your refurbished phone, it might just come plainly without any of its accessories.
- These phones may have gone through a reckless previous owner before return. Therefore, it’s possible for it to have a dark history.
- At times, the phone might have scratches.
Advantages Of Refurbished Phones Than Used Phones
Buying a used phone can save you a number of pennies. They are obviously cheaper and affordable compared to refurbished phones. However, these phones can inconvenience you a great deal. They also come with a lot of extra expenses. If you lack enough cash to get a new phone, getting a refurbished one is better than getting a used one. Below are the other 3 advantages of refurbished phones.
- Have quality assurance : Refurbished phones go thorough rectification process to ensure they work perfectly before resale. They are also returned to ideal manufacturers who perfectly know everything about their credibility. These dealers do their level best to ensure the phone gets back to you with no default. This in turn assures you the best quality phone. This is unlike used phones. These phones barely undergo any refurbishment process thus possible to buy a poor quality phone.
- They have warranty : Similar to new phones, refurbished phones have a warranty that differs from the manufacturer. Most manufacturers offer a very decent warranty or money back period on their refurbished phones. This is so unlike used phones. These phones come from an individual without any return period.
- Provides guaranteed security : Refurbished phones are legit. They go through reputable manufactures that rigorously check them over, reconditions them, wipes any previous data making it as fresh as new. This is unlike used phones. For instance, when you buy a used phone from an individual with no background check, you might end up buying a stolen phone. This might load you the burden of a theft case that you knew nothing about.
6 Best Refurbished Phones To Buy
Refurbished phones have flooded the market today. However, you should beware because some are legit while others are counterfeits. The best and most reliable refurbished phones are from Original Equipment manufacturers or dealers. This is because they grade their phones, allowing you to know what exactly you are about to put on the table. You can also buy legit refurbished phones from reliable retailers like Amazon, mobile phone carriers like T-mobile, and Verizon. From different stores, we have compiled a list of best-refurbished phones to consider;
1. Huawei Mate 20 Pro Refurbished Phone
If you are in pursuit of a large display refurbished smartphone, then we strongly recommend you settle for the Huawei mate 20 pro. First off, it’s powered with a large display size that measures 6.39 inches precisely. On top of that, this display boasts of an OLED panel with a screen resolution power of 1440 × 3120 pixels. As if not enough, it comes with a powerful 4200 mAH non-removable Li-po battery.
Now, isn’t that just quite an amazing deal for a refurbished phone? To spice up things further, the smartphone has a powerful outstanding 24 mp selfie camera. On the rear, we have a triple camera with a wide-angle 40mp lens, an 8 mp telephoto lens, and a 20 mp ultra-wide camera.
Therefore, it’s definitely very limpid that with this device, you will have the clearest and outstanding photos. The latter comes with different memory capacities ranging between 128 GB and 256 GB. Finally, it runs on Android 9.0 platforms which can be upgraded to android 9.1.
- It has a very powerful selfie camera.
- Has a large sized display.
- Has a powerful triple camera.
- It runs on an upgradable android system.
- It boasts of a super powerful battery.
- It is quite expensive to acquire.
2. Samsung Galaxy Note 9 Refurbished Phone
Getting a nice refurbished galaxy note 9 means you’ll be walking home with a pretty nice deal. Taking notes and navigating your phone has also been simplified with its modernized stylus. This stylus is Bluetooth enabled, thus allowing you to use it wirelessly. Nonetheless, this device is available in a variety of colors. These entail ocean blue, midnight black, lavender purple, metallic copper, cloud silver, and alpine white. Unlike Apple products, this gadget runs on an android platform.
To be more specific, the device runs on Android 8.1 oreo which is upgradeable to Android 10. A micro SDcard slot is also inclusive just in case you need to expand your memory size. If you are a power user in pursuit of a nice powerful phone that will keep you going till evening, then the Samsung galaxy note nine will fully scratch your itch. This is so as this handset boasts of a 4000MAH battery, which can go for quite a lot of hours before wearing out. As if not enough, it comes with a massive edge to edge display with curved edges that give it a beautiful outlook.
- Has a large 4000mAh inbuilt battery.
- It comes with a large 6.4 inches display.
- It’s available in a variety of colors.
- It supports both fast and wireless charging.
- Exhibits a powerful dual main camera.
- Has a microSD Slot for memory expandability.
- It runs on an upgradable android system.
- It comes with a Bluetooth enable stylus.
- It’s a bit expensive to acquire.
- Its selfie camera is not as strong.
3. Apple iPhone 8 Refurbished Phone
Buying a certified refurbished iPhone 8 is also a plus for you. This is so because you will be walking home with competent phone as well as saving a few bucks too. Even though it has been in the market for more than three years now, this phone is endowed with a variety of high-end features. To begin with, this phone is a photo expert as it has a single 12 mp rear camera. Its non-removable 1821mAh battery ensures you get to use your phone all day long before recharging it again.
With the refurbished iPhone 8, you will get a quite impressive 4.7-inch screen display. The gorilla glass display is built to last and it’s also scratch-resistant. Just like the iPhone X, this smartphone to runs on IOS 11 which can be upgraded to IOS 14.2. On the downside, this gadget lacks a micro SD card slot and therefore its memory cannot be expanded. However, to neutralize this, it comes with a large internal storage space that starts from 64 GB to 256 GB. Moreover, this smartphone is available in four colors; silver, space gray, gold, and red.
- It runs on an upgradable IOS platform.
- Has a powerful main camera.
- It comes in a variety of colors to choose from.
- It lacks a micro SD slot and so its storage capacity cannot be expanded.
- Its selfie camera is not as strong.
4. Nokia 7 Plus Refurbished Phone
With so much competition in the smartphone world, it’s almost definite that tech giants like Nokia are still keeping their game-high. If there’s any Nokia phone worth buying it’s the Nokia seven plus. Even if you are going for a refurbished deal this phone is definitely quite a good catch as well. This android phone runs on an upgradeable android system and comes in slightly cheaper compared to most of the gadgets mentioned above.
When compared to most smartphones this device exhibits one of the most powerful front cameras. This selfie camera is 16 mp and is backed up by a dual 12mp and 13 mp rear camera. Therefore, this ensures that all its users get nothing short of quality photos. On the upside, it also features a micro SD card slot thus its memory can be expanded. Also, a standby fingerprint scanner on the rear gives users an easy time when locking and unlocking the gadget. In addition to that, it is also equipped with a powerful non-removable 3800mAh battery.
- It has a powerful selfie camera and rear camera.
- Has a large battery capacity.
- It is quite cheap to acquire.
- It comes with a micro SD slot hence its memory capacity can be expanded.
- It only comes in two colors, black/copper and white/copper.
5. SAMSUNG GALAXY S9 Refurbished Phone
Here is yet another mother device from Samsung that never disappoints even if you settle for a refurbished one. The Samsung galaxy s9 is endowed with amazing features, making it definitely among the top five best devices from Samsung. This is so because the latter has been in the market for a longer period of time. With this handset, be ready to get the best quality photos, thanks to its standard dual aperture 12 mp main camera. It also has an iris scanner and a fingerprint scanner both for security purposes. With its 3000MAH, be sure to use your phone continuously without back having to recharge frequently.
This phone has a stand by 3.5mm Jack and it’s available in seven colors. These colors are; coral blue, titanium grey, lilac purple, burgundy red, sunrise gold, ice blue, and midnight black. If you are the type who likes to store many things on your phone, this device has got you covered too. It is equipped with a micro SD card slot for memory expandability. More also, it runs on Android 8.0 oreo, which can be upgraded to android 10.
- It runs on an upgradable android system.
- Has a powerful dual main camera.
- It is available in a variety of colors.
- It has a microSD slot and hence its memory capacity can be expanded if need be.
- Has an average battery capacity.
- Has an average front camera
6. Apple iPhone X Refurbished Phone
Released about three years ago, Apple iPhone X still lies amongst the most prestigious smartphones in modern times. Therefore, it is without a doubt that you should indeed count yourself lucky when you land on a nice refurbished iPhone X deal. This device boasts of a very alluring outlook powered by a pure glass exterior. Plus, a 5.8-inch gorilla glass all-screen display design gives it more credit, hence being more competent even when compared to other gadgets in today’s market.
Nevertheless, it also boasts of a face unlock feature that functions to give it a sense of security. Its battery is quite powerful and can support both fast charging and Qi wireless charging. Similar to most iPhones, the above iPhone runs on an upgradable IOS system. On the downside, the latter lacks a micro SD slot, which basically means that its memory cannot be expanded. Further, it is available in a few colors like space grey and silver.
- It has a powerful dual main camera with of up to 12 Mp.
- Runs on IOS 11.11 which is upgradable to IOS 14.2.
- It has very alluring outlook.
- It lacks a micro sd card slot and hence its memory cannot be expanded.
Tips For Purchasing A Refurbished Phone
- Consider budget : Your budget should lead you in knowing your model of choice. Although refurbished, some of these phones are expensive. If you are classy and want to obtain the most classy and latest refurbished iPhone or Android phone, be ready to spend more than four-digit budget amounts. However, if you are pocket strained and need a low budget phone, you are also catered for. It is therefore important to set your budget before purchase as it will guide you in getting the best phone. Note that, extremely cheap refurbished phones might come with additional expenses. It is therefore important to set your budget relatively higher because the higher the budget the more likely you are to get a quality phone.
- The phones dealer : Is your budget ready? If yes then the next important question is; which is the most reliable dealer to get this phone? Is the dealer reputable? It’s important to be cautious because there are a lot of scammers in the market. Before purchase, do a background checkup of the dealer to find out whether it has marked a trustworthy reputation in the market. To avoid possible risks, you can also get these phones from the phone manufacturer, legit mobile providers like Verizon Wireless, T- bile, AT&T among others. You can also consider credible online stores. On this page below, we have listed the most reputable stores and dealers to consider. Therefore, follow us to the latter.
- The phones original price : Have you made your mind to get a refurbished phone? Have you identified the best store to buy from? The next big step is finding out its brand new price in the market. It would be ridiculous to buy a refurbished phone at a higher or equal price than its brand new price. The price of a refurbished phone should be at least 20% lower than its brand-new price. Also, note that it’s important to avoid refurbished phones that are extremely lower in price than their brand new price. That only means that the phone might be counterfeit or did not go through a thorough repair process.
- Warranty : A legit refurbished phone should be accompanied by a return period as a way of protecting the customer’s interests. This allows you to return your phone for repair or replacement in case of mechanical failure. Whether you are buying your phone from a retailer or original manufacturer, ensure it is accompanied by a warranty period.
Best Place To Buy Refurbished Phones
In our guide, we cover this as one of the best-refurbished phone stores. Swappa online second-hand shop was first committed to dealing with tablets and mobile phones alone. As time went by, the shop has expanded and introduced a variety of sellers, who sell various electronic gadgets. It sells a variety of refurbished phones giving you a wide choice to make. Here the seller is the one who sets the specific price for their items. However, the prices are not always fixed as there is room for negotiation. Generally, Swappa has a good reputation when it comes to selling refurbished phones.
Coming in place as the world’s largest online retail store, it is definite that you can easily find refurbished phones on amazon. If you have a used phone that you want to dispose of, you can sell it on Amazon in exchange for Amazon gift cards. These phones are then repaired, checked, and then graded before being resold to the public as “refurbished phones”. On the upside, Amazon offers a three months warranty to most of their refurbished phones. Therefore, this allows most shoppers to buy pre-owned phones with utmost confidence.
3. Apple Refurbished Phone
If you are looking forward to buying a refurbished iPhone, then we strongly recommend you to visit the apple store for a certified refurbished iPhone. Here you will get used iPhones that are fully repaired and thoroughly checked before being resold. Unlike most stores, Apple grants a whole one year warranty to their refurbished iPhones. This basically means that the iPhone is fully functional to provide you with a long service whilst still allowing you to save a few coins. To boot on that, when you buy a refurbished iPhone from Apple, you can protect the phone with apple care coverage. This will help you to avoid all kinds of hassles in case your phone spoils after your warranty period is due. Now, isn’t that amazing!
Unlike most of the shops mentioned above, eBay provides a large variety of refurbished phones. This is so because; the platform is filled with numerous phone dealers who obviously sell different types of phones. However, if you plan to buy a refurbished\d device on eBay, make sure you do your research quite well. This will help you to avoid buying a defective device and losing your money. It is even more advisable to buy the phone from a merchant who will offer some sort of warranty on the device. This will help you avoid losing your money just in case the phone breaks down earlier than expected.
When buying a refurbished phone, it is always advisable to buy from the original manufacturer in case they have such offers. Samsung is one of the few manufactures that have such kinds of deals. With that, you can get your dream Samsung gadget and still save a few coins as well. Samsung buys older phones and fixes them completely to be fully functional. Moreover, the pre-owned phone will come with a new headset and a charger. As if not enough, the company still goes ahead to provide a one year warranty on all its refurbished smartphones.
Just like Amazon, Gazelle buys old phones from its customers and then repairs them for resale. These phones are fully checked and graded before resale. As matter of fact, they have to go through a 30 point quality check-up before being sold again. This proves that Gazelle provides pre-used phones of high quality. Even though the phones are sold at a discount, they will still serve you quite well. If your phone damages within the first 30 days of purchase, you can take it back for a refund or a replacement.
7. Best Buy
This is also another shop that is very well known for selling refurbished phones. Bestbuy also offers a trade-in program to its customers. When you take your used phone to Bestbuy, they give you a best buy gift card. They then take the phone and repair for resale purpose. The refurbished phones are then repackaged again come with both cable and charger are included. Additionally, the phone comes with a free 90 days money-back guarantee.
Like most online shops, Declutter buys your old phone, repairs, and resell them. However, these devices have to undergo a 70 point inspection before they are resold on their site. When you buy a refurbished phone from Declutter, you will get a free 12 months money-back guarantee. Therefore, this serves to prove that they produce high quality refurbished smartphones.
How do I know if I got a refurbished phone?
Easy! To check whether you android phone is refurbished, follow the following easy procedure;
- Checking your android.
- Open your phones dialer app.
- On your dialer, dial this number; ##786#. If that fails, you can also try *#*#786#*#*.
- After the dial, RTN screen will automatically open. Then, tap ‘view’
- After view, scroll down until you see ‘reconditioned status’
If the status reads yes, then your phone is refurbished. If it reads no, then it’s not refurbished.
How can I tell if my iPhone is refurbished or original
Checking on iPhone
- Open ‘settings’ app on your iPhone.
- Open ‘general’ then ‘about’.
- After about, open ‘model’.
- If the model number starts with M, then your device was purchased brand new. I mean, it’s not refurbished. F means it was refurbished by the apple company.
FAQ – Frequently Asked Questions
How much cheaper are refurbished phone?
This entirely depends on the type, brand, and model of the handset in question. It also depends on how newer or damaged the phone is. However, a legit, quality assured refurbished phone should be 20% cheaper than the brand new one.
What about the network of a refurbished phone?
The network of a refurbished phone should give you mobility freedom. I mean, an ideal refurbished phone should not limit you to a particular network. Most refurbished phones are unlocked, thus allows you to shift to any network provider of your choice. They are also contract-free and do not tie you down to any particular period of time.
How long do refurbished phone last?
It’s hard to tell the exact lasting period of any refurbished phone. However, the fact that it was previously owned can shorten its lifespan. There are many factors that determine the lifespan of a refurbished phone. For instance, how long was the phone owned before? How strong is its inbuilt battery? A well-maintained battery can make your phone last for over five years. However, low-quality inbuilt battery lowers your phone’s lifespan.
Is it safe to buy a refurbished phone?
Yes. These phones are as safe as brand new. Different dealers grade their phones according to their competence levels after being refurbished. This means that the safety of each of these phones depends on the level that it lies in. Therefore if you buy a highly graded refurbished phone, then it means that your phone is safer. However, in case you buy a low graded refurbished phone, it’s safety will be very questionable. Albeit, you must note that it’s not all sellers who grade their refurbished phones. This is why it’s very advisable to buy your refurbished phone from the original manufacturer or a certified seller who grades the phones depending on quality.
Are refurbished iPhones okay?
Refurbished iPhones are generally okay. This is so because the phones are normally counter checked and graded before being resold again. Therefore, getting a refurbished handset is very much okay. However, buying a refurbished iPhone from a non-certified dealer is like playing Russian roulette with your money. This is so because the authenticity of a refurbished iPhone purely depends on who the seller is. That is why we strongly recommend buying refurbished iPhones from certified dealers like Gazelle. Certified dealers even offer you a warranty for your refurbished iPhone. This means that they will repair them for free just in case a problem arises with the phone.
Do apple refurbished products have scratches?
No. it’s so hard to find any apple refurbished product with a scratch. The reason; apple replaces the outer shell of all their refurbished products. Their products go through a thorough repair process leaving them completely scratch-free.
Can you return refurbished apple products?
Yes. If you bought your products directly from Apple stores, it’s possible to return in case of damage or change of mind. However, you should return these products within 14 days after purchase.
Buying a refurbished phone is worth it as it helps you save a number of coins. These phones are also considered as good as new since they go through a very detailed repair process. Most of them are scratch-free making it hard to notice any sign of wear.
They are also affordable, come with a warranty, and give customers quality assurance. Instead of draining your pocket for a brand new phone, follow our guide and get the most reliable phone as per your budget.