iPhones were once an aspirational product. Generations and many variants later, buying this smartphone has become easy. You can buy one on credit or even a refurbished model fixed with a repair kit for iPhone! A refurbished unit is like a used phone, but it doesn’t mean it will be damaged just because something is used.
Some people use their iPhones with a lot of care. Except for everyday wear and tear, you would never notice any damage to their devices. If you are planning to buy a used iPhone, there are a few things you must pay attention to. Here’s a list to get you started:
Check the Warranty
Always check for the warranty before anything else. Apple provides one year of warranty for Apple products. Sometimes, you can even get a warranty and even extend it! You may be covered if you buy a used iPhone before the expiry of the original service warranty, provided it hasn’t been tampered with by anyone else with a repair kit for iPhone.
Ensure Provider Compatibility
Your relatively new phone must be compatible with the service provider you want to use. Most smartphones are compatible with two types of wireless networks: the Global System for Mobile Communication (GSM) or Code Division Multiple Access (CDMA).
If you have a phone for AT&T, it will work with another network that also uses GSM. And if you have a phone from T-Mobile, it will work with another network that also uses CDMA. However, if you have a phone from a carrier that uses CDMA but is planning on using GSM, you will have to get a different type of phone to use with a service provider that uses GSM.
Examine for Activation Lock or Theft
When you find a good deal on an iPhone, it's best to make sure you can use the phone. Apple introduced the activation lock to protect iPhones from theft. You can usually see the activation lock status in Apple's Find My iPhone app, so make sure the phone has location services turned off before you buy it.
Red flags include an active Activation Lock, which means the unit was probably misplaced, stolen, or both.
The original owner needs to know his Apple ID and password to disable the activation lock successfully. If the iPhone is stolen or not purchased from a trusted source, you shouldn't buy it; the unit’s considered a lemon.
Look at the IMEI and Serial Numbers
Before you buy a phone, you should always check the following information:
- iPhone IMEI Number: iOS Settings > General > About > IMEI
- iPhone Model: iOS Settings > General > About > Model
- iPhone Serial Number: iOS Settings > General > About > Serial Number
Additionally, you should also check the phone’s memory and available space just to be sure.
Verify Its Authenticity
There are numerous fakes in the market with no valid serial number, IMEI number, or problems with memory because tinkerers with a repair kit for iPhone messed around with the components. Make sure to record the serial number of the seller and verify it at “Check Your Service and Support Coverage” on Apple’s official website.
If the online check reports the model and the expected end of warranty, you can say it is an original iPhone. Now that you have an iPhone in hand, you can connect to the Apple Store and download one free app from the iTunes Store. If it works, you should be able to download apps from the iTunes Store.
A good deal on a refurbished iPhone sounds like a good idea. But you know what’s even better? Ensuring that unit isn’t a lemon and is still legitimate for use. Remember the tips from this guide so that your next iPhone won’t burn through your bank account and will work like new!
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