How to safely buy a used iphone
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2017
    Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post

    Default How to safely buy a used iphone

    Hello everybody.

    I am a car person and usually I am only in the Garage section of the forum.

    After some drama with my phone, I suddenly remembered that DK is not just about cars. It is one of the best forums on the internet with people who know a lot about what they are talking about. So I thought I would ask here. I know its a common question, and there is a lot of stuff written about this, but I wanted to ask directly because I know that here on DK I will get a reliable trustworthy answer.

    Since I am a car person, I don't know too much about phones. I had Iphones since the first one, and usually replace them every so often (usually when they stop working or I break the screen). My last Iphone was a XS, and I finally drowned it. The XS is ''waterproof'' but it seems it's not waterproof enough, 2 meters of ocean water killed it.

    So, I don't want to buy a new one from the store because the way I see it, I am wasting money. When a phone is 6 months old and has some scratches, it's worth a lot less. If I buy a new phone, after 2 months it will have a LOT of scratches, the speaker/mic holes will be full of metal powder from welding and cutting, and the glass will be cracked. That is unfortunately the reality of life. So instead of spending $1000 on a new one, I might as well buy a used one for $500, since it doesn't matter to me if it's used, by the time I have it it will be very VERY used!

    So, the question is, how do you safely buy a used iPhone? Obviously there are many MANY people selling bad used phones. People sell stolen phones, people sell phones with Icloud lock, stuff like that. I don't want any of that shit.

    Does anybody have any advice?

    So far, this is the advice people gave me:

    1) Ask the seller for the IMEI or serial. If the seller refuses to give you the IMEI, the phone is stolen, 100%. There is no harm in giving a buyer the IMEI, the buyer can't use it for anything bad, so if a seller does not, they have something to hide. Is this true?

    2) Check the IMEI with one of the various websites that has IMEI searches for iphones.

    The IMEI search gives these results:

    * Replaced by Apple - This is not really that important, makes no different to me, right?
    * Activation - If it says Idevice Active, all good. If not active, it's probably stolen from a store, right?
    * Service coverage, expiry, tech support coverage, expiry. These 4 items are all about the apple Warranty and are probably not that important to me since if I break my phone I usually pay to have it fixed or buy another one.
    *FIND MY PHONE - If this is ON then the phone has somebody else's Icloud account and is probably stolen, DO NOT BUY.
    *Loaner device - if 'yes' then that's bad.

    Is this all correct?

    I don't really know how Icloud, find my phone and activation lock works. I don't use those things. I have a apple ID to use apps but that's it, I don't use it for anything.

    So if a phone has no passcode, and on the IMEI search report it says that 'find my phones is OFF, does that mean the phone is 100% safe to buy?

    Does anybody have any more advice for me?

    Thank you

  2. #2
    DK Veteran

    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Thanked 437 Times in 310 Posts


    you have pretty much covered it all
    id mainly make sure its not blocked or icloud locked etc
    so yes ask to see it working before you pay and always test it with your sim to make sure
    i dont like to buy without being able to go pick up (dont trust people posting phones)

  3. The Following User Says Thank You to tango For This Useful Post:

    Baja juan (9th March, 2021)



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