If you buy a used iPhone or iPad instead of a new device, this saves not only the wallet, but also resources. GIGA expert Sebastian gives an overview of what you should pay attention to when buying second-hand and names dealers.
iPhones are expensive – at least the . One, two-year-old predecessor, Apple already sells as a new device. Used buyers can save even more, whether it’s an iPhone 7 or an iPhone 11 (see our iPhone comparison for more details on models). However, there are a few points to consider when purchasing.
Overhaul: Buy used iPad directly from Apple
The easiest and safest way to buy a refurbished iPad from Apple is the easiest and safest. For iPhones, however, you can’t go down this way, as Apple doesn’t currently sell refurbished iPhones. At Apple, the price reductions are limited. For this, Apple is serious about “general overtaking”: the iPad gets a new battery and fresh outer shell. In addition, you get the original scope of delivery, and the one-year warranty is also available as with the purchase of a new device. Only the special packaging shows that it is a completely refurbished product. I myself have also overhauled the iPad Pro 10.5 , which was already a discontinued model at the time ordered from the Apple Store.
When buying, however, you should take a close look at which generation of devices you buy. For an older product, the discount may look tempting at first glance, but it might still be too high for a used price.
Conclusion: Refurbished products purchased from Apple are often indistinguishable from new devices. Unfortunately, you don’t get refurbished iPhones at Apple.
Buy used or refurbished iPhone from other dealers
Other retailers offer both used and refurbished iPhones and iPads. Refurbished products are also needed, but may be brought back to life. One should opt for an established supplier who has properly checked the products before selling them. Compared to the Apple Online Store, you often have to make a few concessions, but also pay lower prices.
Traces of usage on the case must be expected for used iPhones. However, the trader description clarifies how well the item is preserved. Other disadvantages: You don’t get the accessories usually included, or at least not as an original Apple product. The battery should no longer offer the original capacity. In addition, defective original components may have been replaced with inferior ones.
The purchase makes the purchase less risky due to the fact that the trader (for example at reBuy) usually receives a guarantee and can make use of the right of return when purchasing online. If you find that the battery only offers 65 percent of its original capacity (see Settings -> Battery -> Battery condition), you can send the smartphone back if you don’t want to (let) your own battery replacement.
Conclusion: With a reputable dealer, second-hand purchase is usually not a problem and you can save well. After receiving the smartphone, you should check the device and functionality immediately.
Buy used iPhone from Private
A , on the other hand, is much more uncertain. No guarantee, no right to return, the reliability of the seller is unknown, apart from reviews on sales platforms. In addition, there is a risk of getting a hobbyist device – in other words, display or other components may have already been replaced with inferior products. One should therefore take a good look at the used iPhone before buying it: Does anything indicate that parts have been replaced? Signs may be:
- The gap dimensions are not as perfect as Apple is used to, for example, too large.
- Color differences, for example, between the front and the home button.
- Worn screws (see bottom).
- Buttons or switches without proper pressure point/snap-in.
If the seller had a battery replacement done, you can see the invoice: Did a solid workshop carry out the exchange?
In addition to hardware verification, you should also make sure that the previous owner disables the theft protection via iCloud – in the settings in the account (name of the user) -> Where is -> Find my iPhone to find. If this function is not switched off, you cannot use the smartphone even after resetting it to the factory settings.
Conclusion: If you buy an iPhone from a private person, you should thoroughly check the device – if possible before purchasing it. There is no guarantee.
Conclusion on buying a used iPhone or iPad
Personally, I have already bought a used iPhone and a used iPad. But Here I have gone the safe way: I ordered the iPad directly from Apple. I bought the iPhone through a used dealer – used, not completely overhauled. Since the model was only on the market for half a year, it was not possible to use it for many years.
I recommend that you consider buying privately more for the circle of acquaintances, where you know that you are dealing with trusted people.