New mobile phones have gotten more expensive over the years. If you’re looking for a brand-new, top-of-the-range iPhone, then you might expect to pay well into four figures. For some customers, this is an acceptable price to pay for being ahead of the curve. For others, it’s a little more galling.
Fortunately, there’s an alternative available in the form of the used market. Today, mobile phone customers have a whole range of used options at their disposal, among the most attractive of which is a refurbished phone. If you can find the right refurbished model, then you might actually find that it’s indistinguishable from a brand-new one. Let’s take a closer look at this practice, and see how it might save you a lot of money.
What is a refurbished phone?
A refurbished phone is a kind of pre-owned handset that’s been returned and repaired. It might be that there was a defect in the device coming out of the factory, or that the phone has been pre-used.
The process of refurbishment means taking the phone through a series of tests, and repairing any defects. This means that it isn’t just the defect that led to the return that’s been dealt with: a whole range of other minor problems might have been ironed out, too.
Pros and cons of a refurbished phone
This approach presents a few key advantages. It’s better than going to the previous owner directly, as all the minor defects picked up along the way will have been dealt with. You might also find that there’s a warranty included.
On the other hand, you might find that there are superficial scratches and scuffs to contend with, since not all refurbished phones are refurbished to the same standard. Moreover, some of the accessories might be missing, and the phone might not be insurable via traditional means. It’s also worth noting that you won’t have access to models that have only recently come out – as they won’t have had a chance to be sent back for refurbishment.
Refurbished phones grading
Refurbished phones tend to be described according to a lettered system of grades, which runs from A to D. Grade A phones are in the best condition. In many cases, major phone retailers won’t sell you anything that’s lower than a C. You’ll have to go elsewhere for the real bargains!
What do you get with a refurbished phone?
In most cases, you’ll get a charger and a protective packaging, which might not be the original box that the phone came in. This will naturally reduce the amount you can resell the phone for – though this might not matter too much to you.