Resolved What to check for when buying a second hand 5s?

sonicrobby

macrumors 68020
Original poster
Apr 24, 2013
2,369
394
New Orleans
Essentially Im looking to get a 5s off CL, and now previous users' apple info is needed to activate it correct? what must I check for/must be done at the time of purchase to not require his information in the future?

ANSWER:
Wiped and in setup screen: the Apple ID requirement will show up after it asks you to put the SIM card in it.

Not erased: Turn "find my iPhone" off in the iCloud settings.
 
Last edited:

maflynn

Moderator
Staff member
May 3, 2009
63,864
30,392
Boston
That find my phone is off, and there's no lock on it. Basically you need all the information from the buyer off the phone and you have the ability to wipe/reset it yourself.
 

eddiec312

macrumors 6502
Jul 19, 2008
360
7
Miami, FL
Essentially Im looking to get a 5s off CL, and now previous users' apple info is needed to activate it correct? what must I check for/must be done at the time of purchase to not require his information in the future?
Make sure that Find my Iphone is turned off under icloud settings. If it's already off and no icloud account is present you should be good.

You can also request them to go into their Find my Iphone account either on another iphone or a PC and remove the phone from their devices if it's still listed there.
 

sonicrobby

macrumors 68020
Original poster
Apr 24, 2013
2,369
394
New Orleans
That find my phone is off, and there's no lock on it. Basically you need all the information from the buyer off the phone and you have the ability to wipe/reset it yourself.
Make sure that Find my Iphone is turned off under icloud settings. If it's already off and no icloud account is present you should be good.

You can also request them to go into their Find my Iphone account either on another iphone or a PC and remove the phone from their devices if it's still listed there.
Ok as long as 'find my iphone' is turned off, the phone is no longer connected to a user (in terms of reseting). And if the phone is already wiped (at the initial setup screen) does that mean I wont need the guys info at all either?
 

eddiec312

macrumors 6502
Jul 19, 2008
360
7
Miami, FL
Ok as long as 'find my iphone' is turned off, the phone is no longer connected to a user (in terms of reseting). And if the phone is already wiped (at the initial setup screen) does that mean I wont need the guys info at all either?
Right, if you're able to go through the initial setup after the phone is wiped without it asking you to enter a previous icloud accounts passcode then you're good. It should ask you to input your own icloud info if the phone has been reset and wiped.
 

pnoyblazed

macrumors 6502a
Mar 1, 2008
917
272
you can also bring your laptop and restore it as a new device, then pop in your sim
 

Z8beema

macrumors 6502
Sep 18, 2013
387
13
Mass.
Essentially Im looking to get a 5s off CL, and now previous users' apple info is needed to activate it correct? what must I check for/must be done at the time of purchase to not require his information in the future?
Keep in mind that even though you may be able to use it now, if the original owner stops paying there bill that iphone will be a brick
 

corys00

macrumors regular
Sep 6, 2011
148
48
Keep in mind that even though you may be able to use it now, if the original owner stops paying there bill that iphone will be a brick
Let me rephrase this.. If the original owner purchased the phone through their carrier's equipment installment plan and the device isn't paid off or they stop paying their bill that has an installment plan, then your phone stands a strong strong chance of becoming a brick and only paying off the installment plans will make it work again. Call the carrier to find out if it has any installment plans on it.
 

Z8beema

macrumors 6502
Sep 18, 2013
387
13
Mass.
Let me rephrase this.. If the original owner purchased the phone through their carrier's equipment installment plan and the device isn't paid off or they stop paying their bill that has an installment plan, then your phone stands a strong strong chance of becoming a brick and only paying off the installment plans will make it work again. Call the carrier to find out if it has any installment plans on it.
i appreciate it?
 

sonicrobby

macrumors 68020
Original poster
Apr 24, 2013
2,369
394
New Orleans
The way you wrote it there was nothing describing how that scenario would happen.
Lol yes, it was pretty vague, thanks for the clarification

Stick your SIM card in it if you can.
You win.

___________________________

I ended up buying one, it was wiped and in the setup screen. Couldn't put my sim in it because I didn't have the ejector tool (or any other small thin metal rod to use). The screen right after you put the SIM card in is the one where the apple ID is.

Turns out the one I bought wasn't the person-I-bought-it-from's phone. He wouldn't answer my calls or texts. I ended up taking it to Apple and AT&T. ATT managed to track down the original owner and we are working together to catch the thief. The phone was apparently stolen somewhere in shipping it back to Apple/ATT for a screen repair, and the initial owners did get a replacement. Police report is filed, and time will tell how this works out.
 

mtneer

macrumors 68030
Sep 15, 2012
2,756
1,780
Lol yes, it was pretty vague, thanks for the clarification



You win.

___________________________

I ended up buying one, it was wiped and in the setup screen. Couldn't put my sim in it because I didn't have the ejector tool (or any other small thin metal rod to use). The screen right after you put the SIM card in is the one where the apple ID is.

Turns out the one I bought wasn't the person-I-bought-it-from's phone. He wouldn't answer my calls or texts. I ended up taking it to Apple and AT&T. ATT managed to track down the original owner and we are working together to catch the thief. The phone was apparently stolen somewhere in shipping it back to Apple/ATT for a screen repair, and the initial owners did get a replacement. Police report is filed, and time will tell how this works out.
If I read this right - you ended up buying a stolen iPhone? Whose out of their cash now- you or the intermediate buyer (seller to you)?
 

MsRandall

macrumors 65816
Nov 27, 2011
1,115
500
Bay Area, Ca
If I read this right - you ended up buying a stolen iPhone? Whose out of their cash now- you or the intermediate buyer (seller to you)?

Sorry this happen to you - I stopped buying electronic devices from CL just because of all the scammers and stolen equipment
 

kupkakez

macrumors 68000
Apr 4, 2011
1,842
669
Austin, TX
Sorry this happen to you - I stopped buying electronic devices from CL just because of all the scammers and stolen equipment
Ditto. It's just not worth it anymore. I either just pony up the few extra bucks and buy direct from Apple or take a gamble on Swappa. I've never had bad luck on Swappa selling or buying.
 

LostSoul80

macrumors 68020
Jan 25, 2009
2,133
6
Unwanted advice: if you can't buy an iPhone from an Apple Store or through a carrier under contract, you probably can't afford an iPhone. Probably you'd be better off accepting it, instead of buying second hand luxury devices from strangers through a great tool thieves love.
 

mjschabow

macrumors 68030
Dec 25, 2013
2,624
2,138
Yeah, if I were to buy off of CL, I would demand that they meet me at the Sprint store (or whoever your carrier is) and not make the transaction until they verify that the phone can be activated.
 

Appl3FTW

macrumors 603
Nov 15, 2012
5,383
1,017
Wiped, screen is on setup screen.

Giveaways that it's a 5S. check the flash dual led, and touchID. if its space gray or gold its a 5s.
 

luckydcxx

macrumors 65816
Jun 13, 2013
1,150
419
Unwanted advice: if you can't buy an iPhone from an Apple Store or through a carrier under contract, you probably can't afford an iPhone. Probably you'd be better off accepting it, instead of buying second hand luxury devices from strangers through a great tool thieves love.
i couldn't have said this better myself. live and learn i guess.
 

T5BRICK

macrumors G3
Aug 3, 2006
8,086
2,055
Oregon
Unwanted advice: if you can't buy an iPhone from an Apple Store or through a carrier under contract, you probably can't afford an iPhone. Probably you'd be better off accepting it, instead of buying second hand luxury devices from strangers through a great tool thieves love.
Why exactly should a person buy a brand new iPhone from Apple or shell out even more money to their carrier when a used iPhone 4s or iPhone 5 will do the job?

My point: I needed a new phone for my dad. We found a good deal on a "New in box" iPhone 5 on Craigslist. I met up with the guy at a coffee shop, opened the box, plugged my sim card in and went through the setup process. As it turns out, the phone was still running iOS 6, so Activation lock wasn't a concern(Even if it was, going through the setup process would have caught it.) Then I contacted my carrier to verify that the phone wasn't blacklisted. I went through all of this before I handed the other person any cash.

We ended up with an actual New in box iPhone 5(with 12 months of remaining warranty to boot), and I was able to unlock the phone because it wasn't tied to a contract. It cost $325.

If you take the proper precautions, you'll save yourself a potential headache(and probably cash) in the future.
 

mjschabow

macrumors 68030
Dec 25, 2013
2,624
2,138
Why exactly should a person buy a brand new iPhone from Apple or shell out even more money to their carrier when a used iPhone 4s or iPhone 5 will do the job?

My point: I needed a new phone for my dad. We found a good deal on a "New in box" iPhone 5 on Craigslist. I met up with the guy at a coffee shop, opened the box, plugged my sim card in and went through the setup process. As it turns out, the phone was still running iOS 6, so Activation lock wasn't a concern(Even if it was, going through the setup process would have caught it.) Then I contacted my carrier to verify that the phone wasn't blacklisted. I went through all of this before I handed the other person any cash.

We ended up with an actual New in box iPhone 5(with 12 months of remaining warranty to boot), and I was able to unlock the phone because it wasn't tied to a contract. It cost $325.

If you take the proper precautions, you'll save yourself a potential headache(and probably cash) in the future.
This. I bought a new iPhone 5s on ebay a few weeks ago.

1. I knew I was protected by Ebay/Paypal so if the item wasn't as described (bad esn when the listing said good esn), I'd get my money back.

2. I bought from a buyer who had over 1,000 positive comments.
 

techiegirl

macrumors 65816
Sep 7, 2007
1,143
171
We ended up with an actual New in box iPhone 5(with 12 months of remaining warranty to boot), and I was able to unlock the phone because it wasn't tied to a contract. It cost $325.

If you take the proper precautions, you'll save yourself a potential headache(and probably cash) in the future.
What stops the seller from reporting the phone lost or stolen after he sold it to you? or he stops making monthly payments? In either of those cases, your device would be blacklisted.

How much precaution is enough when buying a pre-owned device?
 

T5BRICK

macrumors G3
Aug 3, 2006
8,086
2,055
Oregon
What stops the seller from reporting the phone lost or stolen after he sold it to you? or he stops making monthly payments? In either of those cases, your device would be blacklisted.

How much precaution is enough when buying a pre-owned device?
The particular iPhone I bought happened to be purchased out of contract, and already paid for.

As for the phone being reported as stolen by the seller, that's really a judgement call. Have you ever bought a used car?