What is a refurbished smartphone?
Smartphones are expensive, but buying a refurbished handset can significantly reduce the cost.
Refurbished phones are usually only those that have been returned by customers who changed their minds, or because they had a minor fault – they will have been checked and, if necessary, restored to full working order. They usually don’t come with the original packaging and may not include all accessories, such as chargers or headphones, but usually come with a one-year warranty (but check).
Refurbished phones are usually given a “rating” by retailers. Trading Standards told us that these ratings are not independently defined, so quality can and will vary, but they are generally defined as follows:
- Grade A (‘Like New’ or Pristine’) – these smartphones are in most cases customer returns or smartphones that have been sent back due to little or minor defects that have been fixed 100%. Grade A are as close to a new mobile phone that you can get that has been refurbished to Grade A level.
- Grade B (sometimes referred to as ‘Very Good’) – The phone has “light” signs of use which may signify minor cosmetic blemishes, either on the screen or on the body of the phone itself. It will generally look and feel almost brand new.
- Grade C (sometimes referred to as ‘Good’) – the phone will tend to show ‘moderate’ signs of use, which means you will notice visible scratches on the screen or case. Although you can tell it’s refurbished, you’ll usually save the most money.Prices vary depending on the grade you choose.
Warranty is Key
One of the most important considerations when buying a refurbished smartphone is the warranty that comes with it, as it protects you in the event of a failure. Almost all retrofits come with one, and although they usually last for a year, the duration and who provides it varies, so always check before you buy.
Whoever did the refurbishment will usually supply it – if it’s the manufacturer, you can go directly to them if you have a problem. If the warranty is provided by a retailer, you will be dealing with them.
By Abdul W Moghul