Apple now selling pre-owned iPhones from online store

Pssst! Want to buy an iPhone, cheap?

Well, you’re probably out of luck if you want a functional, genuine phone. But if you want to buy an iPhone that’s cheaper than a new one, Apple may now be able to help you.

The Cupertino firm is selling refurbished iPhones in the online Apple Store, a practice it tried in 2007 but later scrapped. The devices are not cheap, but they cost less than a new one.

Previously, Apple “sort of sold refurbished iPhones” via an eBay storefront that appeared to have been set up by Apple, according to website 9to5Mac, but the sales were “never fully acknowledged by the company.” Apple had in 2007 offered refurbished iPhones online. It’s not clear when the firm stopped that program.

Apple is now selling eight refurbished versions of the iPhone 6s Plus online in its store, in various colors and storage capacities, at a discount of 15 percent off the new-phone price, delivering savings of $100 or $110. A silver refurbished iPhone 6s Plus with 16GB of storage, for example, costs $529.

Apple’s refurbished products have been purchased then returned to Apple because of defects, or because they’re not wanted, and sometimes the items were recycled through Apple’s official recycling program by a previous owner, according to the website MacRumors, which describes the used goods as “superb” quality.

“Apple repairs these products and replaces all faulty parts before offering them for sale again,” according to MacRumors.

Apple says it tests and certifies all refurbished products, which carry a one-year warranty. Refurbished iPhones include a new battery and outer shell, according to Apple.

As for why the company has returned to selling refurbished iPhones, Tech Times writer Carl Velasco speculated that “the measly sales figures of the 6s lineup may have convinced Apple to offer them at a bargain in an attempt to clear out the inventory at a faster pace.

“It’s also a way to attract users who, upon veering from the iPhone 7’s steep price, might be eyeing other Android handsets such as the Google Pixel.”

Photo: The iPhone 6S Plus, 6S and SE lie next to each other in a comparison photograph, in New York. (AP Photo/Julie Jacobson, File)


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  • MaxHoo

    15% off? Is that a typo?
    Shouldn’t that be 50%?