The smartphone market is dominated by iPhones, but they don’t come cheap, and rarely go on sale. If you want to get one without paying full price, buying a used or refurbished iPhone is probably the best option. While a used iPhone can be a good deal, there are a couple of things you need to keep an eye out for.
Buying a used or refurbished iPhone could save you some money, but they may come with trade-offs. If you’re thinking about buying a used iPhone, here are four things you need to check before buying.
Make Sure The Phone Isn’t Stolen
When buying a used iPhone, you don’t want to buy a stolen phone. Apple prevents stolen iPhones from being activated by new users with its Activation Lock tool. Apple used to offer a simple website for checking Activation Lock status, but the company removed it. However, you can still find out if the iPhone you are considering buying is stolen. You need the IMEI number from the iPhone. If you don’t have the phone, you’ll have to tell the seller where it is located.
Check For Hardware Damage
Every iPhone has normal wear and tear such as dings or scratches on the sides and back of the phone. However, major scratches on the screen, problems with the Touch ID or 3D Touch sensor, scratches on the camera lens, or other hardware damage can be big problems. Ask to inspect the phone in person if possible. Check the water damage sensor to see if the phone has ever gotten wet. Test the camera, buttons, and other hardware. If inspecting the phone isn’t possible, buy from one of the reputable, established sellers who stand behind their products.
Check The Battery
Since users can’t replace the iPhone’s battery, you want to be sure that any used iPhone you buy has a strong battery. A lightly used iPhone should have decent battery life, but anything more than a year old should be checked. Ask the seller for as much detail about the battery life as possible or see if they’ll install a new battery before you buy. Apple installs new batteries in their iPhones for a reasonable price, so if you can’t get reliable information on the condition of the battery, go to Apple.com for a price on replacing the battery before you commit to the purchase.
When Possible, Get A Warranty
If you can get a refurbished iPhone with a warranty, do it. The most reputable sellers stand behind their products. A phone that’s had a previous repair won’t necessarily be trouble in the future, but it might, so a warranty is a smart move.
If a used iPhone is what you’re looking for, you need to decide where to pick up your new device. Some good options for finding lower-cost refurbished iPhones include Apple itself or businesses like Fone Store.