The best way to buy a cheap iPhone

  • Refurbished phone are often a great deal if you want a cheap iPhone
  • Older models can still do almost everything a new iPhone can do
  • For basic tasks like games and video calls, an older iPhone is more than adequate

There are no two ways about it – iPhones are not cheap to buy.

Even Apple’s ‘budget’ model, the iPhone SE, will cost you almost $400 (read more about it below, and here)

But while you pay a premium for Apple products, there are ways to get them much cheaper – and if you’re willing to go with an older or refurbished model, you can save hundreds.

Even Apple itself sells refurbished iPhones at bargain prices, which you can find here. Amazon also sells them, although it calls them renewed rather than refurbished, and we’ve picked the best deals below for you.

Of course buying an older, cheap iPhone means you are missing out on some of the latest features.

But for most users, that won’t make a massive difference.

Your photos might be a bit less sharp, and now again a complex app might feel a bit sluggish.

One possible problem is that group FaceTime video is not supported in older devices including anything earlier than the iPhone 6s. There’s more information on that here (and some earlier models can join group calls, but only using audio).

Another thing to take care with is making sure the phone you buy works on your network. For instance, if you’re on Sprint, and buy a Verizon handset, it won’t work properly.

However, you can buy handsets that are unlocked, and will work on any network – and these are often the best way to go if you have the option.

Overall, if all you want a phone for is playing some basic games like Candy Crush or Wordscapes (and we’ve got a guide to the best games here) then an older iPhone will fit the bill perfectly.

iPhone SE

Apple’s new budget handset is the SE, and while it’s still not a cheap iPhone, it is great value for money.

It’s very similar in looks to the iPhone 8, with a 4.7-inch screen and the familiar home button with a fingerprint sensor built it.

However, internally Apple has given the phone some massive upgrades, including a far quicker processor and a much better camera.

It’s a great deal for the money, and although there are significantly cheaper phones out there, often running Google’s rival Android system, the iPhone is simpler to use and less likely to suffer security problems.

iPhone 8

First released in 2017, the iPhone 8 is really the sweet spot for older iPhones. It’s not so old you can’t run the latest software, but is old enough that’ll you’ll be able to get one for a decent price.

However, we’d recommend sticking to the smaller handset, which has a 4.7inch screen. The bigger version, the iPhone 8 plus, is close enough to the new iPhone SE’s price that we’d recommend stumping up the extra cash for the SE if you really want a bigger screen.

While prices change by the day, we’ve scoured the web to find some bargains for you.

iPhone 7

It first hit the streets in 2016, and like the 8, is available in a small and large (known as the iPhone 7 plus) size.

It’s showing its age a little, but this is still a solid, dependable phone that’ll do pretty much everything you want of it. For most poeple on a budget, it’ll do the job perfectly well.

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