If you’re looking to save money on an iPhone, you may be interested to hear that Apple has started selling refurbished iPhone 13 models. This means you can pick up one of the best used smartphones in a newly-restored condition — and with a full 12-month Apple warranty to boot.
At the time of writing Apple has iPhone 13, iPhone 13 Pro and iPhone 13 Pro Max models available on the Apple Certified Refurbished sales page (opens in new tab). Sadly, there’s no sign of any refurbished iPhone 13 minis right now. So unless that changes in the near future you’ll have to go elsewhere if you want to pick up the smallest handset in this particular lineup.
Various different color and storage configurations are available right now, but that’s likely to be in constant flux. Availability of devices is reliant on people trading in devices that can be refurbished and sold on.
So while you can buy a brand new iPhone 13 with 256GB or 512GB of storage, Apple currently only has 128GB refurbished models — and in just three of the six available colors.
Likewise, the minimum amount of storage available on a refurbished iPhone 13 Pro is 256GB, and 512GB on the iPhone 13 Pro Max. If you weren’t hoping to have to pay for quite so much, you may have to go to a different retailer like Amazon (opens in new tab).
Refurbished iPhone 13: How much you'll pay
Prices (opens in new tab) for a refurbished iPhone 13 start at $619, which is $80 less than it would cost you to buy a brand new model right now. Apple doesn’t sell "new" iPhone 13 Pro or Pro Max models any more, but prices start at $849 and $1,099, respectively.
According to Apple, those specific storage configurations started at $999 and $1,299, so you’re saving a respective $150 and $200 by buying a used model.
There are used iPhone 13s out there for a lot less, but those are used rather than refurbished. Buying an Apple-refurbished device means you get a new battery, shell and USB-C to Lightning cable — so these phones are as close to brand new as you can get without buying a fresh model.
All models are unlocked, and come with a full 12-month warranty. As with any other Apple products, you can purchase AppleCare Plus for an extra fee — in this case $149. That gives you more comprehensive repairs coverage and protection against accidental damage.
iPhone 13 vs iPhone 14: What should you buy?
As we’ve noted before, the differences between the iPhone 13 vs iPhone 14 are very subtle. The iPhone 14 has the same 6.1-inch display, but trumps its predecessor with improvements to the camera, and an extra GPU core inside the A15 Bionic chipset. But the iPhone 13 proved to have an extra hour of battery life in our testing, and a considerably lower price tag. Both of which make it a very appealing purchase.
The iPhone 14 also has welcome safety features like Crash Detection and Emergency SOS via Satellite, but we don't think all of these upgrades are enough to warrant the splurge if you're on a budget.
Buying refurbished means you can save a little bit more money, without any of the usual drawbacks of buying a used device. And should the model you want not be available yet, just keep an eye out on the Apple website over the coming months. Odds are more refurbished devices will become available, particularly if you're willing to wait until after the launch of the iPhone 15.