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New To You
Refurbishing has long been a staple of interpersonal computer sales, allowing you to take an older machine and hammer it out until it looks like new. Though they do not have the sparkle as a "fresh out of the box" PC, it does have enough functionality to make it worthwhile. Now with smart phones sporting price tags normally reserved for thinking machines the same has begun happening, especially in the iPhone market. Traditionally you would have to go strait to second market vendors for this type of purchase, especially online auction sites like eBay. Though you would have the best luck in finding a refurbished iPhone, you probably will not pay that much less because of the bidding scale. Now Best Buy offers refurbished iPhones right along their other product lines.
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A Little Less Expensive
The Best Buy refurbishing counter gives the iPhone at a modest discount. The 8 GB model, which normally runs at $199, is now clocking in at $150. The 16 GB one, which is $299 new, is just $250 refurbished. The idea is that this is going to attract a lower socio-economic scale and expand the customer range. This is likely not to happen when people compare the price of the new phone to the price of the refurbished one. The $50 discount is hardly enough to actually warrant a glorified used product, no matter how much it has been claimed to have been cleaned up. On the other hand, very few people actually end up paying $199 or $299 for their iPhones. This only happens in a small window where you can either resign or sign a new contract with AT&T. For normal shoppers it can cost you double. Now when compared to four and six hundred dollars the refurbished price suddenly looks like a more approachable sum. The problem is that most customers do not know this off hand and will likely only see the differential between the "new" price and the refurbished one.
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Will It Make a Difference?
It is not advisable to go for a refurbished product. No matter how well it has been updated, it is going to show signs of wear and tear. This is unfortunate as it should be the responsibility of every consumer to reuse as many things as possible to cut down on waste. Electronics are not like sports jackets: they just do not survive age as well as other things. Instead of looking toward refurbishing try to just recycle all electronics you can and purchase new ones from the manufacturer. The iPhone is going to be a worthwhile purchase so you want to spend the extra money so that you will be able to ensure its long life.