The Rise of Refurbished Mobile Phones in Emerging Markets

One of the myths about emerging markets that have most consumers from the Lower and lower-middle-class is that this majority doesn’t spend a lot of money on consumer goods due to their limited incomes and financial resources. The truth is that those consumers spend on material goods more than what wealthier consumers are willing to spend!

When it comes to mobile phone purchasing decisions, emerging consumers in developing countries tend to go for high-end brands as those brands promise not only the desirable social image but also the durability and high-quality that consumers in emerging markets look for in a smartphone.

The only problem with this is the price of the latest iPhone or Samsung Galaxy, for example, would probably require the emerging consumer to save up for several months in order to be able to afford it and when the money is finally available, it is time for the next generation of that phone to be rolled out!

The other option to get the latest iPhone in time is for the consumers to put themselves in debt to be able to buy it, which is an option that most lower-class consumers don’t prefer.

It might seem like a given for consumers in emerging markets to buy refurbished phones as a reasonable option of a good high-end phone at an affordable price without having to wait months to save for it.

However, mobile phone users in classes with lower incomes in developing countries have just recently started to turn their attention to the benefits and importance of buying refurbished phones instead of brand-new ones. The reason for this delay is consumers not knowing what a refurbished mobile phone is or where to get a good one!

In this article, QwikFone’s experts are answering all your questions before buying refurbished phones online or from a physical shop.

How to identify a worthy refurbished phone?

Perhaps one of the big reasons why mobile phone users with low incomes don’t consider refurbished phones is because of the misconceptions that surround these mobiles. Between those who think the refurbished mobiles are not authentic from their brand and those who think all refurbished phones must have hidden faults and problems, emerging consumers view refurbished phones as a waste of their already limited financial resources.

Thankfully, these myths and others about refurbished phones are starting to clear out and more consumers in emerging markets are becoming more aware of facts such as a pristine refurbished phone with a warranty that can be a better deal than a brand-new phone!

If you’re still wondering about that, the next part of this article is about to set the record straight and change your mind about refurbished phones.

Refurbished phones are authentic mobiles that are manufactured by the original brand. They get renewed in order to replace any defective parts. For example, if a customer buys an iPhone and face a problem with the volume rocker and then returns the phone, Apple fixes this device and then re-lists it as refurbished. Other used phones that experience minor damages also get fixed with OEM parts made by the original mobile manufacturer and, again, listed as refurbished.

So, essentially, refurbished phones are original phones that have been pre-owned and renewed. Users starting to realize that lately have resulted in a boom in the refurbished phone market.

Refurbished phones are on the rise

As consumers started realizing the financial advantages of buying refurbished phones instead of brand-new ones, refurbished phone businesses started to find their way to the top in the mobile emerging markets.

The fact that refurbished phones offer different levels of quality and performance, and therefore come in a wide array of prices for the same device in different conditions, has helped these phones to dominate their sector of the market. In the past years, used refurbished phone sales have gone up in developing countries from 3% in 2016 to 13% in the following year!

These numbers include pristine and as-good-as-new phones as well as grade C phones with technical problems of screen cracks. Of course, this raises an even more important question which is where can you as a mobile user find good quality and trustworthy refurbished phone? You’re about to find out!

The best place to buy refurbished phones

While it is traditionally preferred to visit a physical shop rather than buying a refurbished phone online, the experience of online shopping for refurbished phones is getting better with every passing day. Either way, a good place to buy refurbished phones must include certain assurance in the deal whether it is an online shop or a physical store.

There are a few conditions that must be provided by any trustworthy refurbished phone seller. Without those conditions, users mustn’t even consider the deal!

The warranty policy is the most important thing for refurbished phones. The usual warranty for a brand-new phone is a year and this is exactly what users can expect for refurbished phones as well. Having no warranty for a mobile phone is not acceptable in any scenario. The same thing goes for the return policy; users should retain the right to get their money back and return the refurbished phone if there is anything wrong with it. Users should even be able to change their minds about any refurbished phones and get their money back.

This might seem unreal terms for a refurbished phone as those devices come at low price points. However, for those who look carefully, they will be able to find refurbished phone sellers, such as QwikFone, that offer additional benefits besides the warranty and return policies. For example, with QwikFone, users get all of the phone’s important accessories like the charger and earphones included in the phone price! Moreover, QwikFone customers get to pay installments unlike the common practice in the refurbished phone market that requires up-front payment.


Pristine refurbished phones are rapidly replacing brand-new phones in the purchasing decisions of consumers in developing markets. Although the idea of refurbishing is scary to some users, those who know what to look for can find the best options for the lowest prices. The best place to buy a refurbished phone is the place that offers good terms and assurance as well as allowing customers to have a money-back guarantee.

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