Where to get the best deal on a refurbished iPhone

Sacrificing ‘new’ doesn’t mean sacrificing quality.

Georgia Dixon
Digital Content Editor
Read More
Published on April 30, 2021
4 min read

As much as we love the iPhone for its performance, camera quality and design, there’s one thing we’re not so keen on - the price. Thankfully, there’s a cheaper option for those on a budget who don’t want to fork out for the iPhone 12 or make the Android switch - a refurbished iPhone.

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 where refurbishing comes in. 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.

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 three plans to choose from: the $15/mth Small Plan, the $30/mth Medium Plan, or the $45/mth Large Plan. Each contract-free plan comes with 3GB, 30GB and 50GB, respectively, along with unlimited standard national calls and texts and data banking up to 200GB. The Medium and Large plans also offer unlimited standard international calls to 15 selected countries.

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.

Go to site

iPhone 11

iPhone 11 Pro

iPhone 11 Pro Max

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.

Best price

iPhone XS

iPhone XS Max

iPhone XR

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.

Best price

iPhone 8

iPhone 8 Plus

iPhone X

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.

Best price

iPhone 7

iPhone 7 Plus

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 $659. 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 $1,149. If you'd rather pay off your phone over a longer period, you can see the cheapest iPhone 12 plans from the Big Three below.

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 30/04/21

Georgia Dixon
Written by
Georgia Dixon
Georgia Dixon has over seven years' experience writing about all things tech, entertainment and lifestyle, with bylines in TechLife magazine, 7NEWS and Stuff.co.nz. In her spare time, you'll find her playing games and daydreaming about good food, wine, and dogs.

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