Best refurbished Android smartphones available today

Not everyone can afford the newest, hottest, speediest gadgets on offer today. Especially when manufacturers put so much pressure on the everyday consumer to upgrade yearly, sometimes even more than once within 12 months.

ProductBrandNamePrice
MotorolaMotorola MOTO X 2nd GEN XT1096 16GB Verizon Wireless 4G LTE Smartphone - Black (Certified Refurbished)Buy on Amazon|$90(Price as of 08/22/2019 19:32 ET)
HUAWEIHUAWEI Ascend Mate2 16GB Factory Unlocked GSM 4G LTE Quad-Core Android Smartphone w/ 13MP CameraCheck Price on Amazon
MotorolaMotorola Moto G (XT1028) - Android Smartphone - Verizon No-Contract (Certified Refurbished)Check Price on Amazon
SamsungSamsung Note 2 I317 16GB Unlocked GSM 4G LTE Quad-Core Smartphone w/ 8MP CameraCheck Price on Amazon
MotorolaMotorola Droid Turbo - 32GB Android SmartphoneCheck Price on Amazon

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We say it’s okay to own yesteryear’s Android flagships, and going refurbished is often a wise choice if you can’t or won’t spend north of $600, $700, even $800 on the “next big thing.” No, on-contract phones aren’t an option, and if you feel this inherent reluctance towards pre-owned gear, that’s because you don’t know their full story.

What does refurbished mean?

First of all, it doesn’t mean broken, damaged, defective or cosmetically impaired. A refurb product should show limited or no wear, and while it’s been in the hands of at least another proprietor before you, you can rest assured they didn’t meddle with its internals, dropped it, or harmed it in any significant way.

phone repair

If something like that did happen, it’s actually the best possible news, as the OEM then probably replaced components affected by the injuries. In a nutshell, we’re talking devices that look, feel and function “like-new” here, returned to the seller for one of a number of reasons, and professionally restored to fully working, mint condition.

Most retailers also offer warranties and advantageous return terms, so if you’re not getting what’s advertised, there’s nothing to lose, only to gain. One final note. Just because someone “tested” a phone, and decided to ask their money back, it doesn’t necessarily mean there’s something wrong with the gizmo. Maybe the buyer had unrealistic expectations. Maybe he ordered it by mistake, realized too late, and thought he’d play with it for a while anyway.

It’s possible the merchant and/or courier mishandled the refurbished item as well, which brings you a nice discount at minimal risks.

Best place to buy used phones

Amazon warehouse boxes

Lesson number one – don’t conduct business on eBay unless you absolutely have to, or the deals are too attractive, and you trust the seller. Brick and mortar stores will rarely seem a good idea, considering their limited inventory in such cases.

Ergo, the best places to buy used cell phones are generally online. And the best sites to buy used phones are chiefly Amazon and Best Buy. Currently, the official Best Buy refurbished phones roster merely includes ten Android models, the most compelling of which you’ll find a $265 HTC One M8 and $330 Samsung Galaxy S5 to be.

A $329 Samsung Galaxy Note 3, $249 Galaxy S4 and $90 Motorola Droid Razr Maxx HD are other semi-appealing Best Buy used phones up for grabs at the time of this writing.

Best refurbished smartphones on Amazon

Ah, the Mecca of all things mobile, all things cheap, all things electronics. And of course, the home of the best refurbished cell phones stateside. Look for the portal’s “certified refurbished” section first and foremost, choose the “cell phones” category, and make sure you’re always covered by a standard 90-day warranty.

Samsung Galaxy S9

One of the best refurbished phones you should probably think about scoring this season, for yourself or a loved one, is the Samsung Galaxy S9. This works on Verizon, plus competing GSM carriers. The Galaxy S10 may be out, but the Galaxy S9 is still an excellent choice, featuring all of the top hardware.

It’s got a large Infinity Display, providing you with beautiful edge-to-edge clarity. Being a refurb model, you get a pretty good warranty with it, too.

Samsung Galaxy Note 9

Don’t mind spending a little extra on one of the world’s best phablets, and the best S Pen-capable product to this day? Then the Samsung Galaxy Note 9 can be yours, in a color of your choice. It’s accompanied by your typical 3-month quality guarantee, with a beautiful 6.4-inch Infinity display in tow. It’s got either an octa-core Exynos SoC or the latest Snapdragon chip, plenty of RAM, 128 GB ROM, a big battery, Android Pie, and so much more.

Google Pixel 3

Google’s Pixel 3 is an excellent choice as far as refurbished Android phones go as well. It has a beautiful 5.5-inch display, packed in a phone body that’s fairly unique. The design really stands out from the rest on the market, and comes in Just Black, Not Pink, and Clearly White.

It has all of the latest and greatest hardware inside, able to play most games and apps on the market. Get it on Amazon here.

LG G7 ThinQ

LG’s G7 ThinQ is up next, working on both Verizon and GSM carriers. It’s got a massive 6.1-inch Quad HD edge to edge display, with resolution that sits at 2K. Additionally, there’s 64GB of storage inside, and then 4GB of RAM. There’s a dual camera setup on the back, featuring two 16-megapixel cameras.

There’s a physical wake button for Google Assistant, too!

HTC U11

And finally, we have the HTC U11. It has a 5.5-inch Quad HD display, featuring a resolution of 2560 x 1440. On the rear, there’s a 12-megapixel camera setup with autofocus and LED flash. It can even capture in 4K. There’s a 16-megapixel selfie camera around the front for taking great group selfies, too.

The HTC U11 is also the first smartphone, featuring always-on Alexa. Automatically wake Alexa by saying “Hey Alexa” and searching for your query via voice.

Verdict

Now that’s what we like to call a must-buy! Quite possibly the best refurbished phone money can buy is the Samsung Galaxy S9 or Samsung Galaxy Note 9. Both are formidable devices that rival the top performers even today.

ProductBrandNamePrice
MotorolaMotorola MOTO X 2nd GEN XT1096 16GB Verizon Wireless 4G LTE Smartphone - Black (Certified Refurbished)Buy on Amazon|$90(Price as of 08/22/2019 19:32 ET)
HUAWEIHUAWEI Ascend Mate2 16GB Factory Unlocked GSM 4G LTE Quad-Core Android Smartphone w/ 13MP CameraCheck Price on Amazon
MotorolaMotorola Moto G (XT1028) - Android Smartphone - Verizon No-Contract (Certified Refurbished)Check Price on Amazon
SamsungSamsung Note 2 I317 16GB Unlocked GSM 4G LTE Quad-Core Smartphone w/ 8MP CameraCheck Price on Amazon
MotorolaMotorola Droid Turbo - 32GB Android SmartphoneCheck Price on Amazon

* Links in this table contain affiliate links, which means at no additional cost to you, we will earn a commission if you click through the link and make a purchase. Thank you for your support. For more details, please visit our Privacy policy page.