If you have been shopping for refurbished mobile phones, you may have seen mentions of ‘grading.’ What is grading and how does it indicate the quality of the product? Why is it so important to understand the grading process before buying a refurbished phone? Here’s a look at what grading means:
What is Grading?
Grading is the process of assigning a grade to a refurbished device based on the quality and condition of the device. The phones are often graded based on their physical flaws and damages.
Different sellers have different approaches to this but they generally explain the process on their website so you can make an informed decision.
Most phones are assigned Grades A to D with A being the highest possible grade. You may also hear phrases like ‘Renewed’ or ‘Pristine.’ Here’s a look at what these grades mean:
- Renewed – These phones are technically perfect and you can’t tell they are refurbished Samsung phones from an arm’s length. They usually have less than 3 blemishes and are as good as new. Even the blemishes they have are very faint hairline scratches.
- Grade A – Grade A is a device in a good condition. There’s nothing wrong with it aside from some signs of gentle use from normal wear. You won’t see any major cracks or scratches on the screen or case.
- Grade B – These devices are generally in standard used condition. They may have some scratches and minor dents but there are no issues with their performance. You won’t see any major cracks or dents.
- Grade C – Grade C devices may have some visible scratches or dents that show the device has been used roughly. There may be a slight crack on the screen that can be easily fixed.
- Grade D – Grade D devices have clear visible damage and may need some additional repairs. They are more affordable than any other refurbished phones in the UK but most reputable sellers won’t sell these. You should only consider buying D-grade phones if you can repair the device yourself.
A good seller will only sell renewed, Grade A, and Grade B phones. These look good and are worth the customer’s money. They are only gently-used devices with no clear damage.
What Kind of Quality Checks Are Done?
Stores assign grading after a comprehensive quality check. When they receive a pre-owned or gently-used device, they conduct a thorough inspection to understand the condition of the device. Here’s a look at what these checks include:
- Screen Condition – They will make sure the display is suitable and doesn’t have any visible cracks in it.
- Case Condition – Experts will examine the case carefully to make sure there are no severe cracks or dents. They will also consider the condition of the case while grading the product.
- Buttons – The test will include careful examination of the buttons and switches on the phone, especially the power button.
- Headphone Ports – Many modern mobile phones don’t have headphone ports but the tester will examine if it is present on the mobile.
- Camera – The test will include assessing the camera sensor and its overall performance.
- Touchscreen – They make sure the touchscreen is responsive and doesn’t have any spots or damaged pixels.
- SIM Reader – The SIM reader is also assessed carefully to ensure the card is read properly and there’s no issue with communications.
- Wi-Fi – Testers check the Wi-Fi connectivity to make sure it is up to the standards expected from the device.
- Charging Port – They will also check the charging or USB port to ensure nothing is damaged and both charging and data transfer happens smoothly.
- Connectivity – Experts will examine the antennas and check the connectivity carefully to ensure the calls aren’t disrupted and there are no connectivity issues where reception is strong.
- Software – Software is also examined thoroughly. Some stores will upgrade the device to the latest version of the Operating System so that your phone performs smoothly.
Everything from the sensors to the display is checked carefully. When the device passes all of the tests, it is assigned a grade and put up for sale. If you have any questions about the quality assessment process, it is a good idea to reach out to the store and get more information.
What if the Device Fails the Quality Checks?
If the device fails any aspect of the quality check, it simply won’t be sold. The store will recycle it and salvage all of the parts that can be salvaged but they won’t put it up for sale so you don’t need to worry about receiving a damaged product.
If you do receive a damaged product, you can easily return it before the returns period lapses and get a full refund. Many stores allow customers to test the Refurbished Mobile Phones out for a few days to ensure it doesn’t have problems.
If you buy refurbished phones in UK from a reliable store, you will also get a full warranty so you don’t need to worry about unexpected costs.