Where to buy the best refurbished phones in Australia

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The best refurbished phones in Australia work as good as new, with very little indication they have ever been used before. 

This is helpful, because new smartphones are expensive thanks to their improved specs, better cameras and brighter screens.

If you can’t afford the latest phone, you can buy a cheaper one or a refreshed phone from the previous year.

Paired with a great mobile plan, they’re a fantastic option for your child’s first phone. Refurbished phones cost less and have the features your teen will want.

There are quite a few factors to consider when buying a new refurbished phone. To help, we’ve broken it all down for you below.

What you need to know before you buy a refurbished phone

Buying a refurbished phones isn’t just like buying a second-hand phone on Gumtree. 

Each refurbished phone has been through a process to ensure a level of quality. Things like the battery are typically tested for ongoing performance, and damage to important components like the screen is fixed. 

The best part about buying a refurb rather than just picking up a second hand device is that typically you will get some form of warranty – typically 12 months – should anything go wrong.

But because refurbished phones are still second-hand devices, when you start shopping for a refurb in Australia, you’ll quickly see many sellers offering a variety of different quality ratings.

Unfortunately, there is no Australia-wide standard for the quality of refurbished phones. Different stores use their own language to describe the condition.

That said, you’ll typically find three to five different levels of quality when shopping for a refurbished phone. We’ve listed some of the more common names below.

Best condition: Like new | Mint | Pristine

Devices in this quality-band are immaculate. They have been used, but you wouldn’t know it. There are no scratches or dents, they have been thoroughly tested and cleaned and function as though they’ve never been used before.

Because the quality is closer to a new phone, sometimes the discounts for products in this category aren’t as large. If your main reason for choosing refurbished is to save some cash, you may want to look at one of the categories below.

Great condition: Excellent | Great | A-Grade | Great

This is where you’ll find the best balance between savings and quality. Refurbished phones described as great or excellent quality typically have a few minor marks or scratches you can see when you look up close, but from further away you won’t even notice.

Good condition: Good | B-Grade | Very Good 

Phones at this level look like they are second hand. They have visible scratches, scuffs and dents. However, they are also significantly cheaper, and have been tested and cleaned before resale.

In some cases, phones at this level will have a smaller warranty than the 12 month period, depending on the seller.

Where to buy the best refurbished phones in Australia

If you’re looking to buy a refurbished smartphone in Australia, these stores are a great place to start.

Reebelo

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Originally launched in Singapore in 2019, Reebelo aims to give e-Waste a second life by selling affordable refurbished technology.

With savings of up to 40% off RRP, a 12 month warranty on every purchase and a 14-day money-back guarantee, Reebelo phones are sold unlocked and 100% functional in Australia.

Green Gadgets

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Green Gadgets has been selling high-quality refurbished devices since 2012. Committed to only selling devices that pass a stringent 72-point inspection, Green Gadgets offers a huge variety of products to Australians, as well as offering wholesale refurb sales as well.

You get a 12 month warranty and a 30-day satisfaction guarantee as well.

eBay

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It shouldn’t come as a surprise that eBay offers an extensive range of refurbished smartphones for Australians.

Look for a certified Refurbished badge while shopping on eBay to know that the product was professionally inspected, cleaned, and refurbished to original specifications by the manufacturer or a manufacturer-approved vendor.

It also means you’ll get a 12 month seller-provided warranty.

Amazon

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It’s not really a surprise that online behemoth Amazon also sells refurbished phones.

The Amazon Renewed program offers high quality products that have been refurbished for sale. Products have been inspected, tested and cleaned by Amazon-qualified suppliers.

Amazon Renewed products come with a 180-day supplier warranty.

Kogan

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Kogan’s online store sells pretty much anything, from air conditioners to stand-up desks, so it’s hardly a surprise that it also sells refurbished smartphones.

To sweeten the pot, many Kogan refurbished phones come with a bonus Kogan Mobile prepaid SIM card with 30 day expiry. You’ll also get a 1-year warranty and have been inspected and cleaned.

Phonebot

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With phones sourced from semi-government agencies and private companies, Phonebot has been selling refurbished phones in Australia since 2012.

Depending on the quality of the phone, Phonebot offers between 1 month and 24 months of warranty with your purchase.

OzMobiles

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OzMobiles has been selling refurbished phones since 2011, doing its part to help the environment reduce e-waste.

The company offers a price guarantee on its products, promising to beat advertised prices by $10.

You’ll also get fast, free shipping (same day if you order before 12:30pm AEST, and every device has been through a 72-point performance check and clean before being sold.

Boost

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In addition to selling affordable prepaid SIM plans on the Telstra network, Boost also sells refurbished smartphones.

All products are backed by a 12 month warranty and a 30-day satisfaction guarantee.

You get free, fast shipping, and can also grab a discount on a Boost prepaid SIM with a phone and SIM bundle.

Frank

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With a focus on premium smartphones from Apple and Samsung, Frank also offers refurbished laptops and some accessories.

You get a 12 month warranty and free express shipping on all orders. Plus, for every product sold at Frank, they plant a tree.

Mobile Guru

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Every phone sold on Mobile Guru is Australian stock, and comes with between 12 and 24 months of warranty.

Typically, Mobile Guru dispatches products from Melbourne on the same day you order. And if you’re not happy, there’s a 30-day satisfaction guarantee. 

Belong

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Belong’s Second Life store promises to help the environment and your wallet by selling refurbished phones. 

You can get Apple and Samsung phones that have been through a 30+ point inspection process and clean at a significantly discounted rate.

And being a mobile plan provider, every phone purchased comes with a free Belong SIM card with $80 worth of credit.

Numobile

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Numobile is a mobile plan provider that offers the ability to subscribe to your phone rather than buy it. That means breaking up the purchase cost over a longer period of time and at the end of the contract you can upgrade to a newer phone.

Numobile’s technicians perform a 51-point test on each device to ensure it meets a high quality standard.

Apple

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When you buy a refurbished iPhone from Apple, you know that the manufacturer itself has certified the product.

That means that every refurbished iPhone from Apple has a new battery and outer shell, making it feel like a new product.

Samsung

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When you buy a refurbished Samsung phone from Samsung itself, you do so knowing that the company has ensured the product has been through a 100-point inspection. 

It has also received a brand new battery, and if required, the screen, camera and speakers are replaced using A-Level Samsung parts.

Frequently asked questions about buying the best refurbished phones

Which site is best for refurbished phones in Australia?

There’s no single best place to buy a refurbished phone in Australia. You can feel confident shopping at any of the stores listed above though.

What time of year is best to buy refurbished phones?

While you can pick up a phone at any given time, It’s always good to shop for a refurbished device just after the next model has been released. Typically, early adopters will look to upgrade at this point and sell their older devices, which floods the market with new models to refurbishment.

What is the downside to a refurbished phones?

Typically, you will get a shorter warranty with a refurb than with a new phone. Depending on how old it is, you can also see performance drops compared to newer models.

Your phone may also show signs of wear and tear, depending on the grade of the refurbishment you purchase.

Will a refurbished phone last as long?

Typically speaking, yes. Refurbished phones will last just as long as new phones.

Do refurbished phones have a new battery?

It largely depends on the refurbisher. Some refurbished phones, particularly those offered by the manufacturer, will have a new battery.

Other companies may not replace the battery, though they all run tests to ensure that the battery is in good working order before purchasing.

Are refurbished phones unlocked?

Yes, refurbished phones are sold unlocked and in good working condition for all Australian carriers.

Author

  • Nick Broughall

    Nick is the founder and editor of BTTR. He is an award winning product reviewer, who has spent the last 20 years writing, editing and publishing technology and consumer content for brands like Finder, Gizmodo and TechRadar.

    View all posts
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