It should be brought to your attention that more than 95% of the used cell phones in India were either sold "as it is," or that only 5% of the smartphones went through the process of being repaired or refurbished before being put back on the market. According to the findings of the survey, the second-hand market for consumer electronics items is presently dominated by smartphones, which account for more than 90 percent of the market share.

Overview of the Second-Hand Market

India is indeed the strongest sector for reconditioned or second-hand mobiles despite the fact that it is the second-largest smartphone market worldwide. This is due to brand-conscious and price-conscious Indian consumers. Willing to flaunt names like Samsung and Apple but not wanting to fork out the outrageous amounts associated with these companies, smartphone consumers opt for second-hand gadgets.

For instance, the cheapest price you can anticipate paying for a brand-new iPhone is somewhere in the neighborhood of Rs 40,000, whereas you can get yourself a second-hand iPhone for as low as Rs 7,000. The same is true for other pricey items. The fact that the market for previously used devices with used mobile phone prices of less than Rs 10,000 expanded by 9% yearly and in 2022 is not something that should come as a surprise to anybody. It is anticipated that the overall sales of previously used smartphones would almost quadruple to 48 million this year, up from 26 million in 2016.

The second-hand smartphone sector is still led by the second-hand mobile manufacturer, Xiaomi, which continues to hold the top position. Regarding Cashify, in the used smartphone market in 2019–20, Xiaomi had a 27% market share, followed by 16% for each second-hand mobile manufacturer, Apple, and Samsung. In 2019 and 2020, Cashify analyzed the purchase and selling data of more than one million clients using its platform. In addition to determining the most popular pre-owned smartphone brands throughout the country, the study uncovered significant patterns and variables that have contributed to the expansion of the pre-owned smartphone market over the course of the last year.

According to Cashify, around 19% of customers replace their electronic devices during the first year, while 44% do so within the second year. According to the company's assertion, "the shortening life cycle of mobile devices has not been more evident."The fact that Xiaomi products have the highest resale value is another important aspect of the company. For example, the resale value of an Apple product drops to 70% in three to four months, whereas the value of a Xiaomi product drops by 62% within the same time period. The disparity increases bigger with time. When compared to Xiaomi, the resale value of an Apple product drops by just 19% after 36 months, while that of a Xiaomi product drops by 28%. After 36 months, the resale value of both OnePlus and Samsung phones is around 16% for every piece.

Cashify is a company that buys and sells second-hand mobiles. Additionally, Covid-19 has encouraged people to purchase more pre-owned electronic devices. According to the findings of the survey, 36 percent of respondents purchased reconditioned technology because they needed it for remote work. This was followed by the demand for technology among family members. According to the results of the poll, the most important factor in deciding whether or not to purchase a refurbished mobile phone during the epidemic was the price. This finding suggests that consumers have grown more cautious in light of recent events.

Also Read: 15 Most Selling Mobile Phone Brands in India

The Numbers Behind the Booming Second-Hand Smartphone Industry

During the time that the report was being distributed, the Chairman of the India Cellular and Electronics Association (ICEA), Pankaj Mohindroo, stated that India ought to be the global leader in remanufacturing and re-commerce by capitalizing on its channel of labor cost. He went on to say that substantial growth of re-commerce will help in the reduction of the digital divide because it will make it easier for people to transition from feature phones to smartphones. According to ET Telecom, he also said that the expansion of the market for pre-owned smartphones would also guarantee that there would be a significant decrease in the amount of e-waste as recycling would become the new standard.

It should be brought to your attention that more than 95% of the Refurbished Mobiles in India are sold in their current condition, while the remaining 5% of the smartphones go through the process of being repaired or refurbished. According to the findings of the survey, the second-hand market for consumer electronics items is presently dominated by smartphones, which account for more than 90 percent of the market share. The trend is being followed by more gadgets such as laptops, smartwatches, game consoles, and cameras, and it is taking a methodical and steady approach.

In addition to this, the research gives information on the various income brackets of those who are purchasing used smartphones. It is estimated that approximately 78% of consumers in India who purchase a used smartphone have a monthly income of less than Rs 30,000, whereas approximately 18% of consumers have a monthly income that falls somewhere between Rs 30,000 and Rs 50,000. Given these findings, it is reasonable to draw the conclusion that one of the most important aspects of the market for pre-owned smartphone is the availability of devices at reasonable second-hand mobile prices.


The most recent research report indicates that the market for Refurbished Mobiles in India is on track to almost double in the next three years, reaching USD 4.6 billion by the end of 2025. This growth is expected to take place in the coming years. The research company IDC and the trade group for mobile devices known as ICEA have collaborated to produce this report. According to the reports, consumers in India traded approximately 25 million units of smartphone hardware in the country's second-hand market, which resulted in a revenue generation of more than USD 2.3 billion. The smartphone had an average exchange price of $94 per unit, which is equivalent to approximately Rs 6,900.

FAQs: Second-Hand Mobile

Q. Which is better second-hand or refurbished?

Ans. One may claim that "Refurbished phones" and " second-hand mobile phones " are interchangeable terms since both refer to items that have been used before and were not purchased brand new. However, refurbished products are not the same as used ones since refurbished products are inspected and repaired before being sold. Goods that have been refurbished go through extensive quality and functionality testing, and if any components fail the test, they are either replaced or fixed. After that, the information is removed, and the device is wiped clean. The application has been brought up to the most recent version available.

Most of the time, brand-new accessories are included as well; nonetheless, the warranty is the most significant distinction. Used goods often come with either no guarantee at all or a severely restricted one since the seller cannot take the risk of issuing a comprehensive warranty on something that has not been inspected. Used devices are often offered for sale by the end-users themselves on online marketplaces like eBay. A warranty of at least three months is often included with the purchase of refurbished goods; however, the items offered at the refurbished store come with a guarantee that lasts for up to three years. Therefore, one might feel more at ease purchasing a refurbished product.

Q. Should I buy a second phone?

Ans. Having a separate phone for personal and professional use provides an additional layer of privacy and protection. Your employer may, at some point in the future, feel the need to check on your emails and may request access to your device in order to do so. In severe circumstances, they could be forced to erase the contents of the device's whole hard disc. When you use a phone provided by your employer, they won't be able to access your private information, and if they erase the content of the phone, you won't risk losing any significant messages or memories. Many others have also vouched for the advantages of having your personal phone at home rather than at work since it reduces the number of distractions.

The very idea of having two mobile phones at once might conjure up images straight off the set of a scary technology show for some individuals. Think about it before you entirely dismiss the concept: the majority of the tasks you do can, in some form or another, be accomplished using your smartphone. The last thing you want to happen when you get home after a long, stressful day and are ready to relax is to check your email and find that someone has sent you an email that radically alters your mood. This results in increased personal stress, which in turn impacts the individuals in your immediate environment.

Q. How do you know if the mobile is second-hand or not?

Ans. Here's how to determine whether your android phone is a second-hand mobile phone or is brand-new from the factory:

To launch the dialer, tap the Phone app on your device.

Simply dial ##786# (also known as ##RTN#) using the touchscreen keypad. There is no need to push the dial; the RTN screen should pop up on its own when the phone is picked up.

Move your cursor to the bottom of the RTN screen until you reach the Reconditioned state. Here the answer will either be yes or no depending on whether the phone is secondhand or not.

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