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Apple’s second-user smartphone business is booming


According to research firm IDC, the refurbished smartphone market is booming, with sales expected to reach 413 million units by 2026.

$99 billion red balloons

That’s a $99 billion market, so how can Apple take a chunk out of it? (iPhones account for around 82% of the second hand device market, according to CCS Insights and hold value for longer even in that market.)

Apple already does so, to an extent.

The company’s refurbished store is a great place to visit if you’re in the market for a new Apple device. While it is more expensive than other refurbished sales outlets, what you get in exchange is Apple-tested/repaired hardware, a manufacturer’s guarantee, and original packaging.

Much of the time, other outlets offer no guarantee, may replace cables or chargers (if provided) with non-Apple products, and the packaging can be a chunk of bubble wrap.

With Apple refurbs you pay more, but get more. Though do bear in mind that the company doesn’t want to dramatically undercut its own prices, and nor does it want to dent values in the second user markets.

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