When buying a smartphone, at times our budget tends to be a stumbling block to get what we really want instead of the other. iPhone or Android, one can’t always afford to buy brand new smartphone in the market, but at the same time, you would not want to end up with a subpar phone.
The option to buy already used or refurbished phone might be a great alternative to some or many. Though the phone will be used, but if there is no much wear and tear and everything is still functional, it’s still a good bargain in my opinion. However, apart from the looks (scratches and dents) if there’s any, there are lot of things one should consider and in this context, i’m going to tell you in details about things to check before buying used smartphone inorder to avoid wasting your money and time
1. Ensure The Phone Hardware Is Still Functioning
The most important findings one should perform on any used device is its hardware quality. You will agree with me you wouldn’t want to end up with a device having faulty camera, bad speaker, dead pixel(s) on the screen, touch screen issues, etc.
Although doing these findings manually could be time-consuming and there’s a high probability on skipping important things but thankfully there’s an app for that on both Android and iOS which can help you with these findings automatically and save your time
- To find out about hardware of an old or used iphone, simply download and install a free app called ReGlobe. This app is an online marketplace where you can sell your old or used smartphones. There’s an in-built tool which can help you with all the necessary hardware checks.
Once you install and launch ReGlobe on the iPhone you wish to check, it will guide you through the hardware check one after the other. In the very first step, it will check for all the radio hardware and give you a complete and accurate report.
Next, it will help you to check other hardware such as volume rocker, home, power and mute slider button followed by the mic, earpiece and even the screen for any dead pixels. All these checks are accurate and comprehensive, giving you a better insight about the iPhone you want to buy.
At the end of the check, ReGlobe will give you a buy-back price for the phone but as I’ve already mentioned, that’s optional, whether you wish to sell the phone for some hard cash.
- If buying used or old Android and then you want to check its hardware, you can download and install the Phone Doctor Plus app to make the necessary hardware findings. The app tests for 30 hardware items and sensors, some of which include Multi-touch, Earphones & Microphone, Gyroscope, Proximity Sensor and Display.
2. Checking Phone’s IMEI Info For Authenticity
When buying used smartphone, checking its imei info for authenticity is a must to be performed as it helps to check if the device was stolen or blacklisted in any of the markets. The best way to do that would be by finding out the device IMEI number and checking it on an online database.
- You can simply find the Imie by dialing *#06# and once you have the number, open IMEI Checker homepage and type in the IMEI number of the device and perform the check. If the phone was reported stolen, the service will provide the Blacklist status as Blocked/ Blacklisted
Note: It can take up to few days before the IMEI number is added to the global blacklist and the service does not guarantee that it’s error-free. Also, it will only work when a complaint is filed for that particular IMEI number.
3. Activation Lock
Checking activation lock status is necessary because if a phone (Android or an iPhone) is forced reset, you will not be able to use it on your personal ID.
- To check the activation lock status for iPhone, open the iCloud Activation Lock web page and type in the IMEI number to perform the check. If “Find My iPhone” is enabled on that IMEI number, it will show up and then you should ask the seller to turn it off before buying the phone. Reason os that if you buy a device with activation lock enabled, you will not be able to configure it under your iCloud ID. So ensure its been disabled before buying.
- For Android users, there’s no direct way to know if the phone has the activation lock enabled or disabled. But you can switch on the phone and try configuring it under your Google ID. If the phone prompts that the reset perform was not done the right way and that the old ID is required before you can configure it, it simply means that the activation lock is on. In that case, a fresh of that Android device stock rom will be a perfect fix.
4. iPhone Warranty Status Checking
Warranty status checking is another important thing to perform when buying used or old iphone. To check the warranty status of an iPhone, just open up the Apple’s Check Coverage webpage where you can check the service and support coverage on the iPhone. Just type the serial number of the iPhone and check for its warranty status. Go here to know how you can find the serial number.
Android users, on the other hand, can only rely on a valid bill with IMEI number to know the warranty status of the phone, which normally is up to a year.
Before purchasing any used or refurbished smartphone, ensure to do all the necessary checkings so as to avoid wishing you never made the purchase in the first place.