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Want a Cheap New iPhone? You’ve Got Options

The real question: should you get a refurbished iPhone XR or a new iPhone SE?


If you’re in the market for a cheap iPhone, Apple just started selling refurbished models of the iPhone XR that it released last year. You can get a 64GB refurbished model for $499, which is $100 less than what Apple is currently selling new models. Or you can get a 128GB refurbished model for $539, which is $110 off. Or you can get a 256GB refurbished model for $629, which is $120 off.

The obvious question for anybody considering a refurbished iPhone XR, is how does it compare to the iPhone SE, which Apple just released this past spring? In terms of price, the new iPhone SE, which starts at $399 for a 64GB model, is still the cheapest option. It’s also the smaller and lighter option (but not by much).

The iPhone XR and the iPhone SE are actually pretty similar in terms of power, speed, battery and camera capabilities, too, so the real differentiating factors are 1) how you want to interact with the iPhone and 2) if you care about bezels and a bigger, better display. The iPhone XR obviously has Face ID and more contemporary touch controls, while the iPhone SE has a Home button, which will be more familiar for people transitioning from older iPhones. The iPhone XR also has a significantly bigger display (6.1″ versus the iPhone SE’s 4.7″).

Apple is currently the refurbished iPhone XR in five colors: white, black, blue, orange and yellow. The larger 256GB capacity model is only available in black. Apple currently doesn’t sell refurbished models of the new iPhone SE, and I wouldn’t expect that to change in the next few months.

Buy Now: $599 $499 (64GB)Buy Now: $649 $539 (128GB)

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