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Where to get the best deal on a refurbished iPhone
Sacrificing ‘new’ doesn’t mean sacrificing quality.
What is a refurbished iPhone?
Sure, it’s easy to find a second-hand iPhone on Facebook Marketplace, Gumtree or eBay, but you can never be 100% sure of the quality or even authenticity of the device. You can also say goodbye to your consumer rights with no warranty or refund policy.
That’s why a refurbished iPhone can be a good alternative. Apple offers preloved iPhones which have been revamped with a brand new battery and outer shell, genuine Apple replacement parts (where necessary), all accessories and cables, and a one-year warranty for that added peace of mind. In return, you’ll save hundreds off the price of a new device. Unfortunately, Apple’s range of refurbished iPhones is quite limited, offering only the X and XS at the time of writing.
Many other retailers also offer refurbished iPhones - and often more recent models - for an even bigger discount than Apple (and usually still offer a warranty). However, these third-party refurbs generally come with the original battery and outer shell, so while the phone is guaranteed to work, it might not be at that fresh-out-of-the-box level.
What’s the best plan for my refurbished iPhone?
If you’re purchasing your refurb iPhone outright, you’re in total control of which provider you go with, how much data you get and how big your monthly bill is. That means there are some real bargains to be had, regardless of whether you opt for a prepaid or postpaid plan.
Take a look below to see the most popular plans with at least 10GB data.
*All prices quoted in this article are accurate at time of publishing on 07/02/22
Alternatives to refurbished
Nabbing a refurbished iPhone is a good way to save some cash on your next device, but if you'd prefer something brand new, there are a couple of cheaper options to be had.
First up, the iPhone SE. The 2020 model of Apple's budget-friendly phone that looks like an iPhone 8, but with the higher-spec internals of the iPhone 11. The cheapest price we were able to find for a non-refurbed iPhone SE (2020) was at Kogan for $629. If you're keen to get it on a plan, check out the cheapest offers from each carrier below.
If you're happy to spend a little more, it's also worth considering the new iPhone 12 Mini. This pint-sized phone is the cheapest in the iPhone 12 lineup with prices starting at $1,199, but again, we found it cheaper at Kogan from $965. If you'd rather pay off your phone over a longer period, you can see the cheapest iPhone 12 plans from the Big Three further below.
Where to get a refurbished iPhone on a plan
Australia is home to just one phone provider who offers refurbished devices on plans - numobile. In fact, they only sell refurbs. This Telstra MVNO offers a great selection of iPhones at cheap outright prices (which can also be paid in instalments) as well as monthly handset fees (starting from $15) to go with a numobile plan. Each phone goes through an extensive 51-step testing process to ensure everything from the camera to the battery are functioning as expected.
Here’s a round-up of all the refurbished iPhone models you can get with numobile, sorted by popularity.
Once you’ve picked your device, there are several plans to choose from, ranging from 3GB to 65GB and priced between $15 a month and $45 a month. You can also data bank up to 300GB on all plans, and they're contract-free.
Check out the plans below.
Where to buy a refurbished iPhone 11 or 11 Pro
They’ve been superseded by the iPhone 12, but we reckon the iPhone 11 and 11 Pro are some of the best phones Apple has ever produced. And the good news is that you can still nab a refurbished iPhone 11 or iPhone 11 Pro outright through sellers like Amazon and Kogan. Each retailer has their own refurbishing process and guarantees, so be sure to check the fine print before hitting ‘Buy Now’.
Here are the best offers below.
Where to buy a refurbished iPhone XS, XS Max or XR
Released back in 2018, the iPhone XS, XS Max and XR pack some seriously decent features - even when you pit them against Apple’s more recent offerings - and buying a refurbished model is a smart way to shave off a couple of hundos.
If you prefer to be on a plan, you can nab an iPhone XS from $29/mth, an XS Max from $36 or an XR from just $34/mth through numobile over 24 months.
For those that prefer to own their device outright, Amazon and Kogan have some stellar deals on offer.
Where to buy a refurbished iPhone 8, 8 Plus or X
Apple’s iPhone X and 8 lineups are a few years old now, but they still give more modern phones a run for their money - especially considering how much of that money you can actually save by buying an already cheaper model with that sweet, sweet refurb discount.
Through numobile, you can score yourself a refurbished iPhone 8 from $21/mth, an 8 Plus from $24/mth or an X from $30 over 24 months.
Otherwise, Amazon has some great deals on Apple’s 2018 lineup. Check out the prices below.
Where to buy a refurbished iPhone 7 or 7 Plus
While we recommend one of Apple’s newer devices for the best performance and longevity, the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus are still good options for those on a tight budget - even more so when you get a refurbished bargain.
numobile used to offer 24-month repayments on the iPhone 7 and 7, but if you want one of these older models, Amazon is one of the only places still selling them.