Last Updated on January 4, 2020 by Husain Parvez
New year, new refurbished iPhone 8 deals. But the truth is that buying used or refurbished electronic devices always comes with some risks and the situation is no different for iPhones.
That’s why we decided to point you towards the best and safest refurbished iPhone 8 deals that you can find. We actually already have another article on this subject with the main difference that it’s targeted towards used iPhones. So, if you’re willing to take a slightly higher risk in exchange for saving more money, check that out as well. Without any further ado, let’s on with it!
Refurbished iPhone 8 VS Used: What’s the Difference?
Refurbished iPhones are essentially used. However, there is one big difference. A refurbished phone is only truly considered refurbished when it has undergone professional checks/tests by certified professionals who make sure that everything works as it should. There are times where that professional comes from the manufacturer as well – in our case, Apple. Other than that, it’s not unusual for a refurbished device to receive special treatment in terms of cleaning, getting rid of fingerprints, scratches, etc.
A used device, on the other hand, could be in any condition from “Brand new” to “Only for parts”. There is no clear definition or limit for used phones. But there definitely is one for refurbished ones as you generally know what to expect – or at least that’s how it should be.
It’s not unusual for many professionals/sellers to mark a phone as refurbished even when it’s not. That’s why buying electronics that are used or even refurbished can be a risky investment – unless you know where to look.
Don’t get us wrong. We’re not saying that buying from a reputable place is always 100% safe. But it’s absolutely much better than buying from a 3rd party that you don’t know much about.
Why Should We Consider Getting A Refurbished iPhone 8?
As we mentioned above, buying a used or refurbished iPhone 8 is a risky business. And the same thing applies to any used electronic device, really. So, why should we do it?
Well, the first obvious reason is saving money. It’s not unusual for a used Apple device to come at hundreds of dollars cheaper than its actual price. You just need to know where to look – but more on that later.
Other than that, refurbished smartphones are great backups. Not only because they don’t cost much, but also because we’ve got the option of getting an unlocked model that works with every carrier on the cheap.
Most people, especially professionals, can’t afford to spend a moment without a phone. A missed call could result in a missed offer, job opportunity, an urgent meeting, or anything like that. So, a refurbished phone is truly a great alternative to buying a brand-new secondary device.
And as we mentioned above, don’t forget about unlocked smartphones. Most brand-new iPhones in the US are carrier locked and unlocking one yourself can be tricky or even expensive.
By buying an unlocked used/refurbished iPhone 8 that’s unlocked out of the box, you’re not only saving money on the phone itself. You’re saving money on unlocking it as well.
Last, but not least, there are a lot more options in the refurbished market than there are on the new one. Finding brand-new iPhone 8, 7, or older devices can be a bit tough – depending on where you live. After all, it makes sense for manufacturers to focus production on their newer models.
Things to Look Out for
Now that all of that is out of the way, the only thing that remains is to start looking for your refurbished iPhone 8. But, in order to do that safely, there are a few things to keep in mind. To be more specific:
- Seller reputation
- Phone condition
- Carrier restrictions (Unlocked VS Locked models)
- Import fees, taxes, and hidden extra charges
1: Seller Reputation
The very first thing that you need to do is to restrict your shopping locations down to the most reputable ones. And while there are a ton of reputable platforms to choose from, the most trustworthy ones are:
Apple is most definitely the best choice in terms of trustworthiness. However, they rarely list older devices in their refurbished section. At the moment of writing this article, there is nothing but refurbished iPhone X devices to choose from.
Our next best bet would be Swappa. It’s a platform that’s entirely focused on selling used/refurbished electronics and they’ve been around for a while now. So, it’s hard to go wrong with them.
Last, but not least, Amazon is another decent place for buying used electronics. Their “Renewed” tag refers to refurbished devices and there are usually plenty of older iPhone offerings there.
The only thing to keep in mind here is that choosing a reliable platform is one thing. Choosing a trustworthy seller is another.
E-commerce platforms like Amazon, Swappa, and eBay, all rely on 3rd party sellers for the goods. These stars that you can see above are the average rating that a seller has. User feedback. If a seller has an average rating of less than 4.5 or 4 stars, then it’s probably for the best if you stay away from him.
2: Phone Condition
“Phone condition” refers to how badly your used phone is, well, used! This is a very important description to keep in mind when buying a refurbished iPhone 8 or any kind of electric device for that matter.
If you see a listing with no reference to the condition of the phone, just don’t bother with it. This is a basic piece of information that every seller should mention and if he doesn’t bother even doing that, then he’s probably not someone to be trusted.
Now, each website may use its own terms to describe the condition of a device. But here’s what you can generally expect:
- Good/Refurbished: A device that’s slightly used but in a brand-new like condition
- Mint, Grade B, Grade C: May have slight or heavy cosmetic damage – but nothing that affects the functionality of the phone
- Grade D/Only for repairs: A device that’s faulty in one or more areas (Camera, display, battery, can’t boot, SIM, etc)
If you can get your hands on some photos and a detailed description of the phone’s condition, that would be for the best.
3: Carrier Restrictions (Unlocked VS Locked Models)
Many smartphones, especially in the US and Canada, are locked down to a single carrier. This means that you won’t be able to use your phone with any other SIM except the one that belongs to your carrier.
So, when buying a used smartphone, try picking one that’s unlocked by default. An unlocked smartphone should work with every carrier which is always a good thing.
Just do keep in mind that some unlocked smartphones will no longer work with the carrier that they were originally locked with. That’s because some companies don’t like it when you unlock their smartphones and prevent you from using their services again with that very same device. We’re not saying that it always happens. But it’s a possibility.
4: Import Fees, Taxes, and Hidden Charges
Many online buyers don’t seem to know that when importing something from another country, you may end up having to pay extra import fees, taxes, and any other hidden charges that present themselves upon delivery.
The first thing that you need to do in order to avoid such tragedies in the first place is to avoid shopping from outside your country in the first place. Buying cheap stuff is okay. But the moment you get something expensive, there is always the risk of having to pay extra for it.
The exact fees along with their terms will greatly differ from country to country. There are different laws, different regulations, etc. So, make your own research on that one before buying.
Refurbished iPhone 8 Deals and Guide: Wrapping Up
That’s all we’ve got for now. If that’s too much to take in at once, here’s everything that we talked about in a nutshell:
- Refurbished VS Used: Refurbished phones are tested by professionals and are brought back to a brand-new like condition with special treatment whereas used devices could be anything from almost brand-new to pretty much broken
- Why get a refurbished iPhone: Cheaper, unlocked out of the box, and more options as well
- Best iPhone 8 deals: Amazonand Swappa are your best bets for a refurbished iPhone 8
- Things to look out for when shopping: Seller reputation, phone condition, carrier restrictions, and extra import charges/fees as well
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