The Era of Refurbished Mobile Phones: Causes, Effects, and Impacts

It won’t be surprising if you see one of your closest friends using the premium iPhone X when you know it’s hard for him to afford the same. While you might think he must have won a jackpot of sorts, it might be the case that he is using a refurbished device that was brought at almost half the original price. Based on reports released by the IDC, the refurbished smartphone arena is getting popular by the day and in the next five years we might expect the market to hit sales worth $52.7 billion. Needless to say, refurbished and pre-owned market has made is easier for individuals to own flagships; thereby amplifying the status symbol, quite considerably.

Reasons behind the Popularity of Refurbished Smartphones

Although the existing smartphone market presents newer opportunities for the enthusiasts, especially in terms of features and competitive price points, the cost of premium flagships continue to soar, almost abnormally. Therefore, individuals who prefer purchasing premium smartphones from brands of repute are forced to opt for pre-owned and used mobile phones.

Another reason why the refurbished smartphone market is getting all the attention is regarding the longevity of high-end devices. Popular smartphone brands like Apple and Samsung are known to manufacture exceptional devices which are hard to own at times, courtesy the price points. However, if an when an individual gets hold of such a premium device, it’s only appropriate to keep using the same for more than two years in general. Therefore, although the refurbished flagships are often costlier as compared to new smartphones from the lesser known brands, it is wiser to opt for the former— in terms of long-term relevance.

What are the Predictions for the Refurbished Mobile Market?

Going into the future, the concept of refurbished smartphones is expected to flourish. The study, as published by IDC expects the market to grow up till 2022. Moreover, by the end of 2022, the average resale price of a gadget would be as low as $180 which is quite a motivating factor for this increasingly popular market. In addition to that, 5G smartphones are expected to enter the market by 2019 which will further improve the roll out of refurbished devices.

Refurbished Smartphones: Understanding the Concept

For those who aren’t well versed with the concept of refurbished gadgets, it is important to understand the basics and the operational strategies behind the same. Any gadget that’s opened for purchase and immediately disposed of courtesy minimal manufacturing issues is considered as a gadget that’s subject to refurbishment. The concerned retailer then sends over the gadget to the manufacturer or third-party vendors where the issues are rectified and the gadget becomes as good as new. Individuals can then buy unboxed mobile phones from select vendors, including the likes of Togofogo, at a highly subsidized price. Most importantly, a majority of refurbished gadgets available online come with warranties which make them costlier as compared to their pre-owned counterparts.

How will the Refurbished Smartphone Arena Impact the Existing OEMs?

Put simply, the impact of refurbished devices on the existing market is multi-layered and cannot be explained with a planar approach. Superficially, the popularity of refurbished devices seems to have dampened the sale of new gadgets and related OEMs. However, companies are increasingly launching new gadgets at exorbitant price tags which validate the fact the OEMs are actually making profits and there is still an audience for new devices. Moreover, it needs to be understood that the soaring costs of new smartphones are in a way responsible for the increasing popularity of refurbished gadgets.

Refurbished Devices vs. Used Mobile Phones

There are quite a few differences between used smartphones and refurbished devices. While pre-owned and used gadgets are always available for purchase, via online and offline counters, refurbished devices have a select clientele. Moreover, purchasing used devices directly from a seller has several downfalls and there are times when it becomes nearly impossible to detect minor issues associated with the gadget. However, in case of refurbished smartphones there are warranties to fall back upon, if an issue is encountered. Therefore, refurbished devices are better options for those who are planning to upgrade without having to pay a fortune.

It’s quite clear that exorbitant smartphones prices have led to the continued adoption of refurbished gadgets with the latter offering a host of upgradable options to the gadget enthusiasts and that too for substantially lower prices.

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