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Refurbished vs. Pre-Owned vs. Renewed vs. Open Box vs. Used vs. New: What are the Differences?

Refurbished vs. Pre-Owned vs. Renewed vs. Open Box vs. Used vs. New: What are the Differences?

    Although new products come with the best performance, warranty, and tech support, its price is also the highest one. So in order to save money, it become more common to acquire second-hand devices in recent years .There are lots of places to buy refurbished laptop and phones. But when you look for refurbished device you often see terms like refurbished, renewed, pre-owned, open box and used etc. placed in product descriptions. So what are the major differences between them? Which one should I choose? Let's take a brief insight into these concepts, so you can find the second-hand devices that fits your demand perfectly.

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What are the Differences Bewteen Refurbished, Pre-Owned, Renewed, Open Box, Used and New?


Refurbished products lie somewhere in between used and new. It has either been returned as used or returned as faulty, however after being returned it will have undergone three rigorous phases of renewal namely repairing, reconditioning and repackaging. This entire refurbishing cycle involves diagnostic testing, replacement of faulty parts with genuine ones, thorough cleaning and packaging. After a thorough professional inspection, the refurbished electronics are again floated in the market for selling at very cheap rates.This means that when you receive a refurbished item, it should look exactly like a new version of the item.
However, there are other reasons why an item may be listed as refurbished. They are not always products which have been returned as used or faulty. Some other examples are:

Damaged During Shipping

If minor damage is caused to the product during transportation, such as a minor scratch or dent to the item, a retailer could return the product. This item, such as a laptop could then be refurbished, tested and verified, then sold as a refurbished laptop.

Defects Detected During Production

If the manufacturer detects a defect during the production process, for example a desktop computer being assembled notices a defect on the case. The whole product could be repaired then sold as a refurbished PC, or sold to retailers as refurbished computer.

Many refurbished products come with a warranty, although this warranty is shorter than new products'. In many cases, buying a refurbished product from the original manufacturer gives you access to the same tech support you’d get with a new product.

Certified Refurbished

The difference between a refurbished product and a certified refurbished product is that the former is refurbished by third-party companies or individuals while the latter is refurbished by manufacturers, dealers, or authorized third-party refurbishment companies.
Due to the expertise and the tooling used in the factory, usually certified refurbished product is the better purchase.


In general, renewed and refurbished refer to the same thing. The term renewed is used by Amazon to describe computer (electronics) that has been refurbished. You won't be very wrong if you use these two terms to mean the same thing.


Pre-Owned means that phones and laptops are likely used but returned within the return policy. Usually, they were in better condition when returned than a refurbished product may have been.

Open Box
Most of the open box items are equivalent to the brand new article. As the name suggests, open box electronics are articles that have only been removed from their original packaging and used as demo models at retail locations. Sometimes, they may be unused returns from consumers. So, technically open box products cannot be termed as brand new in any case.

Open box items might show wear and tear on its packaging, but for that wear and tear companies offer great discounts that make it worthy of buying. A bulk of open box items are not even turned on but just a bit of tampering with the packaging. Hence, such articles are sold at heavy discounts.However, when opting for open box electronics, make sure you are buying it from a reliable dealer who offers a written manufacturer's warranty, like Bestbuy.


Used devices come from a previous owner, typically an individual who has decided to sell. Because a previous owner has already used them, it is not unusual for it to come with cosmetic issues like scratches. Some form of battery degradation can also be expected, depending on how long the unit was used by the previous owner. If a buyer isn’t completely honest, it may even come with damage that affects usability. Buying used tends to be the cheapest way (saving 50% off the list price isn't uncommon, depending on the condition), but it’s also the riskiest, since they often don’t come with a warranty or return policy. eBay is usually the best place for individuals to buy and sell used phones and laptops.


 New devices come straight from the factory: When you buy a phone or laptops off the shelf at Best Buy or brand official website, sealed in-box, it's a new device.  You get it in unused condition, full warranty and support, all the original parts and accessories, etc. New devices may occasionally go on sale for moderate discounts, and generally decrease in price over time, but will still fetch a higher price than used and refurbished devices.

Best places to buy Used or Refurbished Electronics

Best Buy

Best Buy is a great place to start. Its Outlet store sells used, refurbished, and open-box merchandise (products that have been returned opened but unused) with big discounts.You’ll find almost every major carrier, manufacturer, and tons of accessories too. Certified refurbished devices are guaranteed to be in like-new condition. Everything comes with some sort of warranty, even if it's only 90 days.


【Payment】Paypal, Visa, Mastercard, American Express.

【Coupons and Discounts】

1.Free shipping on orders over $35;

2.Save up to 50% on select refurbished electronics;

3.Save up to 40% on open-box appliances and TVs.

【Cashback from Extrabux】Up to 0.5% cashback

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Gazelle is one of the best-known places to buy refurbished electronics. It is a US company that specializes in refurbished iPhones, as well as iPads, MacBooks, and Samsung phones. All phones bought via Gazelle have been vetted and passed its 30-point process test, meaning they always look and function as good as new. You can also return any phone you buy on Gazelle within 30 days of purchase and get your money back. The company also offers device protection plans, so you can get another layer of reassurance.


【Payment】Visa, Master Card and PayPal etc.

【Coupons and Discounts】

1. Sign up at Gazelle  for $20 off your first order over $200;

2. Spring sale: up to $125 off select devices;

3. Up to 90% off clearance items.

【Cashback from Extrabux】No cashback!

Swappa is one of my favorite sites for used electronics good deals. It  originally only sold tablets and phones, the service has become even better by adding gaming, laptops, cameras, and VR to the mix. Swappa is dedicated to safely selling like-new products and have strict policies in place to protect both the buyer and the seller. Each device must pass a test that proves it’s not stolen or on a lease/payment plan, and other safeguards. Every purchase goes through PayPal for added protection.


【Payment】Visa, Master Card and PayPal etc.

【Coupons and Discounts】

1. Up to 60% off select refurbished phones, laptops, tablets and cameras ect.

【Cashback from Extrabux】No cashback!

Amazon Renewed

 Amazon, the world’s largest online retailer, is also a great place to shop for refurbished Electronics. Amazon sells refurbished products in its Renewed store, including smartphones, laptops, tablets, consoles and desktop PCs.These refurbished devices are put through an inspection process that typically includes a full diagnostic test, replacement of any defective parts, and a thorough cleaning process carried out by the Marketplace seller, vendor, or by Amazon. They even come with a limited period warranty by the seller or manufacturer.


【Payment】Visa, MasterCard, Discover, JCB, Diner's Club, American Express, Amazon Gift Card and Checking Account.

【Coupons and Discounts】

1. Free delivery for Amazon Prime;

2. Up to $200 off select renewed devices.

【Cashback from Extrabux】Cashback temporarily unavailable!


At Newegg's Certified Refurbish Outlet, you can buy refurbished electronics, such as refurbished computers and peripherals. All refurbished items are inspected and repaired by certified technicians, and some products come with warranties.


【Payment】MasterCard, American Express, Discover,Paypal and Newegg gift cards.

【Coupons and Discounts】

1. Free delivery on every order;

2. Up to 50% off refurbish products.

【Cashback from Extrabux】Up to 1% cashback


Walmart is one of the largest retail chain stores, and chances are you have a store nearby. They also offer refurbished phones at great prices if you trust the brand. Their selection is pretty wide too, including TVs, cellphones, laptops and tablets. You get a 90-day minimum warranty on these products and accessories, so you can shop in peace.


【Payment】Visa, Mastercard, American Express, Walmart gift cards and PayPal.

【Coupons and Discounts】

1. Free shipping on orders over $35;

2. Up to 65% off Certified refurbished electronics.

【Cashback from Extrabux】Up to 4% cashback


Going with official eBay refurbished phones is arguably as safe as any other competitor on this list. These come with an impressive two-year warranty, a money-back guarantee, and full refunds if returned before 30 days. But pay attention that eBay also has tons of individual sellers that will sell you heavily discounted used phone. And while you can find some pretty good deals here, there aren't any guarantees like Gazelle or Swappa. Do your research on the seller before clicking any Buy it Now buttons.


【Payment】Paypal, Visa, AMEX and Mastercard.

【Coupons and Discounts】

1. Up to 50% off used and refurbished electronics

【Cashback from Extrabux】Up to 4.6% cashback


Apple has a growing list of refurbished phones and devices they sell at its official site.  You can find refurbished iPhones, MacBooks, Apple Watch, iPad etc. Apple certifies that all its refurbs have all defective parts replaced, inside and out, and are thoroughly tested, cleaned, and repackaged. They come with a one-year warranty and up to 90 days of free tech support.


【Payment】Visa, MarsterCard, American express and PayPal.

【Coupons and Discounts】

1. Free shipping on your purchase;

2. Up to 30% off certified refurbished Apple products.

【Cashback from Extrabux】No cashback!

Dell Refurbished

Dell offers certified refurbished products inluding laptops, desktops and monitors. Unlike many sites, this store lets you know whether each product was returned unopened, used and then refurbished, or cosmetically damaged. Regardless of the reason, the products come with the same warranty as new products. You can also return them within 30 days at no cost.


【Payment】 Visa, Mastercard, American Express and Paypal.

【Coupons and Discounts】

1. Free shipping on all orders;

2. 50% off any Dell Precision 7520 with coupon code "BUYDEAL7520",Deal ends Wed., 3/30, 9 AM CT;

3. 50% off any Dell Latitude 7280 with coupon code "YES2DEAL7280",Deal ends Wed., 3/30, 9 AM CT;

4. Up to 50% off clearance items.

【Cashback from Extrabux】Up to 5% cashback


Samsung actually sells certified pre-owned phones just like Apple at steep discounts. Most of them are over a year old, but you get a phone rebuilt by Samsung, a new charger and headphones, and a standard Samsung 1-year warranty for peace of mind.


【Payment】 Visa, JCB, Mastercard, American Express, Discover, Diner's Club and Paypal.

【Coupons and Discounts】

1. Free shipping on orders over $50;

2. Up to 65% off certified re-newed smartphones.

【Cashback from Extrabux】Up to 4% cashback

2022-03-26 00:342448