Meizu-M1-China-unboxing_1.jpgIn preparing a smartphone for reselling or to be given away, you want the device and its accessories to look and feel as good as new.

This means that the out of the box experience should be as similar as unboxing the device for the first time.

It is good practice to always keep a smartphone’s original packaging, accessories, manuals and anything that’s pertinent to the new user or buyer, including any warranties that may still be in effect.

This can add value to the package when selling it to a new buyer and makes it more convenient to give the device as a gift to a friend or family member.

Hand me downs, after all, shouldn’t feel or look like someone else’s garbage.

Preparing the system

Windows_Phone_8_Warning.pngThe most important aspect of a smartphone isn’t the hardware.

While the hardware is certainly what determines the price or market value of a smartphone, it is usually the data in that device that is often irreplaceable.

Not only are we talking about personal or financial information, apps and emails stored on the device, many of us have hundreds or thousands of photos and videos which represent important events, memories and moments that we can never bring back.

The first step in preparing a smartphone to be sold or given away is to ensure that all these valuable files are saved elsewhere. You can use a cloud backup service like Microsoft OneDrive or Google Photos.

To be extra sure, I would plug in the smartphone and move the valuable files off by saving them to at least two separate places (i.e. a files on a server or PC and burned on a DVD or USB thumb drive).

Once that valuable information is done, it would be a good idea to delete each email account as well as each app that accesses a service on the Internet or which has valuable information. I know you can reset a smartphone within a few clicks, and that’s eventually what you will do but ensuring you remove email and other personal accounts just helps ensure the device is cleaned.

It is also good practice to update the phone’s OS to the newest version before you do a factory reset. This way, the new owner can take advantage of the latest operating system and features.


Preparing the hardware


Aside from cleaning the smartphone, removing any attached microSD card and removing your SIM card, ensuring that all the necessary plugs, adaptors, cases and connectors are also wiped down ensures that you’re giving away a really clean phone and accessories.

No need to go crazy here, a damp towel or microfiber cloth can usually work wonders on these devices. The wires of the charging cables can get a bit gunky so using a wet wipe can clean a lot of the dirt and dust that has accumulated. If there’s more stuff to remove, using solutions like Goo Gone or Mr. Clean’s Magic Eraser should do the trick.

Following these steps should leave you with a like-new phone and accessories that should delight and impress the new owner.

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Gadjo Sevilla
Gadjo is a veteran journalist covering consumer technology, lifestyle and business. He has written for international newspapers, magazines and online publications. He is founder of as well as an avid photographer and travel enthusiast.