If ever there was a business boom, it is in the markets that sell and buy used cell phones. High prices of smartphones in low economic times make it opportune to get that great piece you saw the other day. Not just Ebay but many other big resellers like Radiashack and Best Buy are waiting for you with just the thing. One such reseller resold a phenomenal 5.2 million phones last year, risen from 2.1 million five years ago, and now sells its major stock in the U.S. itself, with Asia, Africa and Latin America taking the left overs.
Evolution in cell phones
Yes, we have come a long way from the first handheld not-so-mobile ‘mobile’ phone which almost weighed 2 kilos and could have better rested in a strap-on holster if its usage was as prolific and constant as it is today. But mobile phones have evolved in technology, and cost, into ultra light slim and sometimes highly complex conveniences that go beyond utility to give that extra ‘something’ feeling about owning one, and then invariably pass from new to pre-used ownership in little more than it takes a human sperm to germinate in its mother’s womb and run its term to birth, and in consequence create a supply source to buy used cell phones.
Mobile phone brands that have universal status are more than a mouthful and add to the confusion of choice, and perhaps, regret. Big brands like Apple’s i-phone, Nokia, Samsung, Sony Ericsson, Motorola, Haier, Toshiba, NEC, LG, Panasonic, Pantech, Philips, Qtek, Sagem, Blaupunkt, Audiovox, Kyocera, Telital, Samsung, Sharp, Siemens, Alcatel, Benq, Bird, Eten, Geo, HP, XCute, VK Mobile, Gigabyte, Novatel, Sanyo, Firefly phones Vtech, most of them universal and a few, geographic region specific, bombard the user on why you should buy them. But the truth is that most features are common to all.
There will have been some 5.3 billion mobile subscriptions by the end of 2010, so you can very easily have the pleasure of owning an expensive fancy-featured and very ‘cool’ unit at a fraction of its original cost if you buy a used cell phone (nobody will ever know), and you will be doing not only yourself a service in cash saving but also serve the community by delaying another addition to the hazardous scrap pile.
Your dealer will replace parts or refurbish your ‘new’ phone, and can give you a safe ‘past-owner-data’ cleaned device with batteries, and may even perform some maintenance before reselling it to you, though more extensive repairs are usually sent to China, Vietnam or other manufacturing bases before returning to the market.
Your case is made easier by earlier owners who say they have learnt their lesson as they never understood, or even needed to use, the ‘smart’ part of their phones and would rather get a less ‘smart’ cheaper phone with features they actually need. When global sales of used phones add to hundreds of million units a year, who cares if others know that you use a ‘used’.