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5 Important Things You Must Do Before Buying a Refurbished iPhone

5 Important Things You Must Do Before Buying a Refurbished iPhone

In this modern world, almost everyone needs a smartphone, and one of the most popular choices is Apple’s iPhone.

The iPhone is a crowd favorite because of its awesome specs. One thing that you must consider, however, is the fact that buying it outright or on a plan can be quite expensive. It is also rare for the Apple iPhone to be sold at a promotional price.

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And yet, this high price is one of the things that make iPhones all the more appealing to consumers.

If you’re at the end of your wits trying to put together enough money to buy this device, then this may be the best piece of advice for you: Buy a refurbished iPhone rather than a brand-new one.

Essentially, the term “refurbished” describes items that are almost “new” but were returned by the customer. It also includes products that were returned under warranty and are being resold after the manufacturer has fixed any issues it may have had to ensure that it functions properly.

If you really want an iPhone but cannot afford it at full price, consider getting a good-quality refurbished one. In doing so, there are five important things you must do to ensure that you make the right choice:

1. Determine Authenticity: IMEI Number and Serial Number

One thing you must avoid at all costs is buying fake iPhones. Luckily, it is quite easy to tell which ones are fake as such devices often don’t have a valid IMEI and serial number. They may also have capacity issues, but it is easier and safer to check the important numbers before you make the purchase.

To do so, you can have the seller send you the IMEI and serial numbers assigned to the device you’re planning to buy. If not, you can also check it for yourself if you are allowed to perform hands-on testing before the purchase. Below are some instructions on how to do it:

  • For the iPhone’s model, you can proceed to the iOS settings, then tap General. After that, go to the About page where you can select Model.
  • For the serial and IMEI numbers, you can follow the same instructions until you reach About where you can tap on Serial Number or IMEI.

Once you get these numbers, you can verify the device’s authenticity via the “Check Your Service and Support Coverage” page on the Apple official website. If it reports the correct iPhone model and an expected warranty expiration, it is genuine.

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You can also check its authenticity by connecting to the Apple store. Then, try downloading a free app. An original device should be able to download and run apps without any problem.

2. Check for Provider Compatibility

Another important thing you must consider before buying an iPhone is its compatibility with your network provider. Although all iPhone models starting from the iPhone 5 generation can work with any company with GSM or CDMA, AT&T may require additional LTE compatibility to boost network speed in certain places.

To check this, you can perform the same model check as described in item number 1. Once you get to the Model page, you can look for the option to “Identify Your iPhone,” which details the technology used for the model.

3. Verify Its Source – Avoid Stolen Apple Devices

Aside from fake devices, you should also check whether the iPhone you wish to buy is stolen or not. Once lost, Apple prevents new users from using a device through the Activation Lock tool. With this, it is likely that you’ll only find out that the device is locked after the purchase.

Fortunately, this can be verified by checking the 15-digit IMEI number. To check the source of certified refurbished Apple devices, start by following the steps described in item number 1.

Upon retrieving the IMEI number, proceed to the CTIA Stolen Phone Checker website and enter the number in the space provided. Tick the “I’m not a robot” checkbox, then click “Submit.” The website will either turn green with a “Not reported lost or stolen” notice or red with “Reported as lost or stolen.”

4. Check for Carrier Lock

Another way you can check the compatibility of the device with your carrier is by calling the company if they can activate the phone or not. To do this, you need to provide the IMEI number and explain to them that you’re buying a refurbished device. They should be able to confirm whether or not the model can be activated and used with your current carrier.

5. Test Battery Health

The battery is usually the first thing that gives out in smart devices, and iPhones are no exception. And because iPhone batteries cannot be replaced, you have to make sure that the refurbished device you’re planning to buy still has an acceptable battery capacity.

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Devices that are lightly used should have good battery health. However, you have to have devices that are one year old or more checked with the help of Apple devices’ Battery Health feature to ensure that the battery is still strong.

To do so, simply open the Settings app and select Battery. This is where you can tap “Battery Health.” It should show you the maximum capacity of the battery, which is at 100 percent for brand-new devices. The higher the percentage, the better.

Shop Wisely

Shopping for refurbished iPhone devices is a great way to save on purchase costs. Since they are returned to their optimum condition before selling, you’ll enjoy the same perks that brand-new iPhone owners do without the high price tag. To make the best decision, use this article as a guide for shopping wisely.

General FAQs

Is it safe to buy a refurbished iPhone?

If someone used the phone for a year or two and then wiped it to factory defaults it is used. Even if that iPhone is being sold by someone claiming to be an authorized dealer (they may or may not be), it is still used, not refurbished. With that out of the way, yes, by all means, a refurbished iPhone is a great buy.

Can you buy a refurbished iPhone at the Apple Store?

No. All Apple devices apart from iPhones can be bought refurbished, but only from the Apple Store website. You might want to note however, that all devices made by Apple, as well as other tech companies, make use of ‘known good’ parts from devices that have been returned for unrelated issues.

Are refurbished phones worth buying?

Refurbished phones aren’t necessarily damaged phones. The way the phone is procured varies from manufacturer to manufacturer. Some may sell a defective phone that has been returned and repaired.

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