THE RISE OF PRE-LOVED PHONES

LO­CAL SMART-DE­VICE RE­PAIR SPE­CIAL­ISTS WE­FIX HAVE RE-LAUNCHED THEIR I2 RANGE OF RE­FUR­BISHED IPHONES, EN­ABLING CON­SUMERS TO EN­JOY ONE OF THE WORLD’S MOST POP­U­LAR MO­BILE DE­VICES WITH­OUT BREAK­ING THE BANK.

In Flight Magazine - - TEXT & IMAGE © WEFIX - { TEXT & IM­AGE © WE­FIX }

There are cur­rently three de­vices in the range, from the i2 iPhone 5S 32 GB to the i2 iPhone 6 64 GB model, each pack­aged with ear­phones and a screen pro­tec­tor. In line with the we­Fix phi­los­o­phy of “re­pair rather than re­place”, a one-year pro­tec­tion plan from in­sur­ance part­ner Click­2Sure is an op­tional ad­di­tion to each pack­age, mean­ing that de­vices are in­sured from the mo­ment con­sumers leave the store.

“Pre-loved de­vices are the per­fect so­lu­tion for those who want a qual­ity phone at a lower price than buy­ing new, or for those who are con­scious about the en­vi­ron­ment,” ex­plains Grant Webster, COO of we­Fix.

At the in­ter­sec­tion between af­ford­abil­ity and en­vi­ron­men­tal con­scious­ness lies a grow­ing trend for re­fur­bished or re­con­di­tioned de­vices and tech­nol­ogy, a rel­a­tively new mar­ket in South Africa. While con­sumers may have the de­sire to buy de­vices new, the af­ford­abil­ity of a re­fur­bished or re­con­di­tioned unit makes it a highly at­trac­tive al­ter­na­tive.

This is in ad­di­tion to the fact that of the world’s stag­ger­ing 50 mil­lion tons of elec­tronic waste – mostly com­put­ers and smart­phones – gen­er­ated this year, most will find its way to African and Asian coun­tries, which are be­ing adopted as global land­fills. Each year, South Africa gen­er­ates about 300,000 tonnes of elec­tronic waste, which amounts to about 5.7 kg per cit­i­zen. We’re the sec­ond-high­est gen­er­a­tor of e-waste in Africa.

Elec­tronic waste con­tains toxic sub­stances that can pol­lute the en­vi­ron­ment and endanger life. The neg­a­tive im­pact of ex­trac­tion of the nat­u­ral re­sources re­quired to man­u­fac­ture elec­tronic de­vices is twofold. Not only is the con­tin­u­ous min­ing of these min­er­als threat­en­ing the nat­u­ral habi­tat of wildlife, con­trol over min­ing has also cre­ated con­flict among hu­man com­mu­ni­ties.

Grant says that South Africans are in­creas­ingly call­ing for re­fur­bished or re­con­di­tioned prod­ucts that ex­ist within a new “cir­cu­lar econ­omy” that re­jects the “take, make and dis­pose” in­dus­trial model. In the last few years, lo­cal com­pa­nies such as Vo­da­com, DStv, and we­Fix are of­fer­ing re­furb or re­pair prod­ucts that are af­ford­able and take the en­vi­ron­ment into con­sid­er­a­tion.

He points out that some con­sumers up­grade their smart­phones ev­ery 18 to 24 months as their voice and data con­tracts ex­pire, beg­ging the ques­tion: What hap­pens to the old de­vices?

Mo­bile de­vices may be re­fur­bished for a num­ber of rea­sons. Most are “pre-loved” or sec­ond hand, but oth­ers are dam­aged dur­ing ship­ment, demo units that have been shop-soiled, or new de­vices that have a fault upon open­ing. we­Fix re­places dam­aged parts with new parts, bring­ing an oth­er­wise in­tact unit back to life.

“When pur­chas­ing an i2 de­vice, con­sumers have peace of mind know­ing that they have a gen­uine high-end smart­phone re­stored to full work­ing con­di­tion and ap­pear­ance by cred­i­ble tech­ni­cians, who of­fer a one-year war­ranty on their work,” says Grant.

For more in­for­ma­tion, visit we­fix.co.za.

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