Why don't people buy Refurbished instead of brand new?

AlexGraphicD

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Oct 26, 2015
274
192
New York
Seriously, it is better for the environment and you get a high quality machine just like a brand new with extended warranty and cheaper.
If Apple offered refurbished iPhones I would get one too. Instead, I bought one on eBay in excellent condition with a three days use from the original owner.
The planet can't provide resources for infinite electronic devices and machines.
Plus why make the companies even richer than they already are by selling overpriced products just because they are brand new.
 
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Mr_Brightside_@

macrumors 68040
Sep 23, 2005
3,091
1,134
Toronto
I agree with you, but A) the stigma (partially due to status, partially because reforms get bad names with other manufacturers) and B) availability, meaning they don't always have the model you want on hand.

Personally, I can't wait to get my hands on a loaded, refurbed Air.
 
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kohlson

macrumors 68000
Apr 23, 2010
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I look at the refurb's from time to time, and have purchased some over the years. But sometimes when I am ready to buy, the price is not that compelling. I'm not sure I understand your last sentence. Regardless, I am not interested in how much money Apple makes, only if their products are worth it to me. If, for example, Blackberry came out with a product that offered me more value (as defined by benefits - cost) then I would buy that one, even if it cost more money.
 
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Larry-K

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Jun 28, 2011
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Whenever I can, I buy Apple refurbs. They used to be spotty, but they've been solid for years now.

Seems like it's the only time you can be sure somebody actually looked at the thing.
 

LorenK

macrumors 6502
Dec 26, 2007
369
119
Illinois
Seriously, it is better for the environment and you get a high quality machine just like a brand new with extended warranty and cheaper.
If Apple offered refurbished iPhones I would get one too. Instead, I bought one on eBay in excellent condition with a three days use from the original owner.
The planet can't provide resources for infinite electronic devices and machines.
Plus why make the companies even richer than they already are by selling overpriced products just because they are brand new.
Seriously, how old are you? Twelve? Do you know anything about economics? A company is not going to make a product unless it is assured that it will make a reasonable profit on that product. Refurbs are not new products, but are returns, and because of the law in the U.S. cannot be sold as new, and because of people's suspicions about returned product, cannot be sold at the same price as new. Even though Apple makes a profit on refurbs, it is not enough to sustain the development of new products on a long term basis.

Buying a refurb does not in fact alter the environmental landscape one bit, because by buying a new or newish device, you maintain the demand for the product, which keeps the production lines churning. The best way to help the environment is to realize that you don't need the new device in the first place and get an older used device that would otherwise go in a landfill.
 

AlexGraphicD

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Oct 26, 2015
274
192
New York
Seriously, how old are you? Twelve? Do you know anything about economics? A company is not going to make a product unless it is assured that it will make a reasonable profit on that product. Refurbs are not new products, but are returns, and because of the law in the U.S. cannot be sold as new, and because of people's suspicions about returned product, cannot be sold at the same price as new. Even though Apple makes a profit on refurbs, it is not enough to sustain the development of new products on a long term basis.

Buying a refurb does not in fact alter the environmental landscape one bit, because by buying a new or newish device, you maintain the demand for the product, which keeps the production lines churning. The best way to help the environment is to realize that you don't need the new device in the first place and get an older used device that would otherwise go in a landfill.
Why the sarcastic tone to begin with? o_O
I was not talking about the company and the actions it takes to generate more profit, rather than the consumer's mentality being suspicious of refurbs and returned electronic devices.
Of course we can't live in the today's world without a mobile phone, but personally I try to change my phone as rarely as possible and now with my newly purchased iphone after being fed up with the laggy and slow android, I'm gonna keep it for a long long time assuming it doesn't get broken or damaged beyond repair.
What worries me the most is the line of thinking of the majority of people that are craving the brand new shiny devices over the refurbs or slightly used ones so they are not categorized as being poor or being cheap.
 

Larry-K

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Jun 28, 2011
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Because someone else touched it!

Really I don't buy refurbs because chances are the HDD has had something written to it and has lost part of it's life, really don't feel like replacing one of those things sooner than I have to.
I always throw out whatever drive Apple shipped in the thing, so that's never a concern.
 
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Pakaku

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Aug 29, 2009
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Mostly because Apple's refurbished section is deliberately hidden as a tiny little link the website's footer. Most people I know had never even knew its existence before I pointed it out to them. These people were also the tech-inept that Apple likes to target their computers towards.

The main store is, of course, the main focus of their website and extremely easy to find.
 

Larry-K

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Jun 28, 2011
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With as much as Apple charges for refurbs, I would just end up paying the same price or more than a new system with no wear on the hardware.
What's to wear? I haven't seen anything wrong with an Apple Refurb in the past decade.

These things don't show up with any noticeable wear. If you want a prettier box, and you don't trust their refurb assurances, pay full price, I'd rather put the few bucks you save, into better RAM and Storage options.

There have been times when the model I wanted was only available as a refurb, and I was glad to get it.

If you just don't like people touching your stuff, that's valid.
 

Larry-K

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Jun 28, 2011
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But the refurb products get through a cleaning process aren't they?
I don't know, they look clean, but I'm not eating off them. Purell's cheap in the big bottle.

You can get Apple Care for the full 3 Years on 'em if you're worried about that.
 

pmau

macrumors 68000
Nov 9, 2010
1,542
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I do not buy refurbished because people treat their belongings like sh*t.
They just give it back no matter what happened to it. They simply don't care.

But ... things aren't build to last anyways. At least technology gadgets aren't.
So no. I do not buy refurbished electronics.

There's enough great value that you can buy though.
Even suits from retired business people have great value because they were expensive to manufacture.

EDIT: I started buying old razors from 1950+. It's really amazing what you can buy for a few dollars that has great value.
 
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laurim

macrumors 68000
Sep 19, 2003
1,886
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Minnesota USA
I bought a refurbished Thunderbolt Display. The main reason I don't buy refurbished computers is because I don't know if there is some kind of cosmetic flaw on it. I like taking good care of my Apple stuff and would rather not have one with a dent already in it.

I'm at least as concerned about the environment as you. I mow the lawn and clear snow in the driveway with a freaking electrical cord dragging behind me, lol. Which I why I hang onto my electronics as long as I can and when I need to let them go I either find a new owner or I take them to my city's recycling place (I could also send them back to Apple for recycling if I chose).
 
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What's to wear? I haven't seen anything wrong with an Apple Refurb in the past decade.

These things don't show up with any noticeable wear. If you want a prettier box, and you don't trust their refurb assurances, pay full price, I'd rather put the few bucks you save, into better RAM and Storage options.

There have been times when the model I wanted was only available as a refurb, and I was glad to get it.

If you just don't like people touching your stuff, that's valid.
I'm talking about component wear, and at this point it's probably OCD kicking in. :D
 

Larry-K

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Jun 28, 2011
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I bought a refurbished Thunderbolt Display. The main reason I don't buy refurbished computers is because I don't know if there is some kind of cosmetic flaw on it. I like taking good care of my Apple stuff and would rather not have one with a dent already in it.
I bought one too, $200 cheaper and it was flawless.

As I mentioned previously, I have not seen a refurb with a discernible flaw in a very long time.
 

pika2000

macrumors 603
Jun 22, 2007
5,352
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Almost every Mac I bought was refurbished. Apple's refurbished is amazing, pretty much looks like new, wrapped in a white box. I even bought refurbished airports, iPods, and MacBooks. The only time I bought new is if it's an iPhone (because Apple doesn't offer refurbished iPhone ), or if I bought the product close to release date (no refurbished version available).

Apple is unique in their quality assurance on refurbished products. Alas, I cannot say the same thing about other companies. I bought refurbished Dell machines as well, and sometimes it is clear they didn't check the products from the previous owner (dust/grime, batteries on wireless mouse still attached, wireless mouse/keyboard switched on out of the box, packing materials incomplete, etc). Sometimes not a biggy, but you know you are getting a (very) used product. When I open a refurbished Apple product on the other hand, it feels pretty much like new.
 

maestrosteve

macrumors member
Sep 5, 2014
37
20
Toms River, NJ
I laugh when I hear someone say they bought a refurb and it looks like new. I'll bet you never opened it up.
I bought 2 MacBooks a few years back for my kids when they were going to college. I bought 2 new ones from Apple, but one of them was DOA, so when I returned it, I bought a refurb, the same model as the new one, because I bought what everybody was saying about how they are as good as new. 2 years into the ownership, both hard drives failed. Not blaming Apple for that. Hard drives go south without notice, they always do eventually. I'm the kind of person inclined to try and do any kind of repair and can follow instructions, so with posted online instructions, tools and new hard drives in hand, I opened each macbook.

The new one had a lots of little screws to remove the shield, more little screws for other things, and I kept track of where everything went, replaced the drive, and it was beautiful. Inside was clean, wires were properly wrapped and tucked under where they needed to be. I opened the refurb, and more than half the screws weren't even there. There should have been around 30 little screws holding the shield, and I think I remember there being about 6. The inside was kind of messy with things not laid out all that cleanly. I hated putting it back together knowing I didn't have all the screws, but hey, the thing worked, and it looked great.


I've been a Mac user since 1987 (Mac SE), currently have a Mac desktop, Macbook, iPad, iPhone, plus 2 other iPhones, macs and iPads in my household. I don't like saying anything negative about Apple, in fact, I sold my Apple stock a few years ago and it paid for my daughter's expensive wedding. Apple has been good to me, but I won't buy another refurb. I've seen the insides. I'd like to think mine was an isolated experience, but how can I? It's really like buying a used car that looks perfect, but has issues that you can't see.