Cheapest sim-free smartphone?

15
Posted 9th Nov
Hi. My wife’s iPhone SE needs to go in for repair and John Lewis day it could be gone for up to 28 days. I feel this is a scare tactic so people will just put up with whatever is wrong. She’s gonna call their bluff as the phone is almost unusable and after less than 2 years old it’s unacceptable to have to shell out for a new one.

Can someone recommend a cheap sim free smartphone to tide her over while she’s without her current phone? Nothing fancy, just something that will run WhatsApp, Facebook and make calls. Thanks.
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Hi, TTYTT. I hope you are well. I'm not sure I quite understand. You think JL giving their repair T's and C's is a 'tactic' so you don't use their services? I don't think that's quite it. It's just making you aware of the length of time it 'could' take. Anyway, if the phone is still in warranty then; of course; you will take advantage of getting them to repair it. It's the sensible thing to do.

As to a "temp" replacement, why does it have to be 'sim-fee' may I ask? Can you get a locked phone (which would probably be cheaper) but to the carrier her current phone uses? By the way, which provider does she use? I'd just pick up a real cheap handset off Ebay or a refurbished 'something' off one of the resellers. I had a look on 02's site for you but they don't really have anything cheap/suitable. Argos seem very light on anything cheap at the mo too. Maybe one of the supermarkets - i.e. Asda or Sainsbury's. They have been known to do some really cheap (and nasty!) handsets from the likes of Alcatel etc. They'll still do as a tide-over phone though.

What's happened to her iPhone?
Also, take a look on Music Magpie as they have money off some of their handsets. Prices around £30-40. And how about CEX? If you have a store, you could pick up something cheap?

All the best, Phsy.
Edited by: "Phsycronix" 9th Nov
These things take time to send back, repair, test, return, contact you..pick up.
Thanks for the advice Phsy! Didn’t really mean the waiting time was a tactic but just my cynical take on their T’s and C’s.

Her phone has had a dodgy battery for about a year now and needs several charges a day. It can also switch off randomly when it’s hit a good charge left. Apple took a look at the start of the year and just recommended some battery preserving tips but it’s clear now this is a hardware issue. Hoping they see that and replace the battery.

I mentioned sim-free as obviously we don’t want to be tied into a contract. Her current provider is GiffGaff. I had thought about second had phones so that’s a possible option. Just unaware if there’s something out there that would serve the purpose that can be bought new so we know there’s not going to be any issues with it.
TTYTT09/11/2019 11:53

Thanks for the advice Phsy! Didn’t really mean the waiting time was a t …Thanks for the advice Phsy! Didn’t really mean the waiting time was a tactic but just my cynical take on their T’s and C’s. Her phone has had a dodgy battery for about a year now and needs several charges a day. It can also switch off randomly when it’s hit a good charge left. Apple took a look at the start of the year and just recommended some battery preserving tips but it’s clear now this is a hardware issue. Hoping they see that and replace the battery. I mentioned sim-free as obviously we don’t want to be tied into a contract. Her current provider is GiffGaff. I had thought about second had phones so that’s a possible option. Just unaware if there’s something out there that would serve the purpose that can be bought new so we know there’s not going to be any issues with it.



I see. Thanks for the explanation. I must admit, I always thought these phone manufacturers didn't cover batteries as a 'warranty' item but if you think it is hardware-related, that's different. Mind you, if Apple have seen it then I would have expected them to find something? Just be careful that they (JL) don't try to charge you for 'examining' the phone - only to find nothing wrong. Check T's & C's in case they have a clause that gives them the right to charge if they find nothing wrong - i.e. 'they' don't class a tired battery as a warranty issue. It has been known to happen before. In some cases, they won't return the item until the bill is paid. I'm not suggesting this will happen in your case though...

Also, Sim-free doesn't necessarily mean a 'contract' phone. A Sim-free phone just means it is open to be used on any network. You could buy a "Pay as you go" phone, which could be locked to a network - but in some cases can also be an unlocked phone too. I know it might sound as though I'm being judgemental but may I politely ask: can she not live WITHOUT a 'smartphone' just for a (possible) month? Then you could pick up one of these £5-odd 'dumbphones' just for calls/txts. I do realise today that some people just can't survive without them though! Hehe.
I have the same problem with iPhone se, I use it as a back up phone since the battery drains so quick. Sometimes I fully charge it and leave it in airplane mode only to come back to a flat battery next day, before it would go down a few percentage on airplane mode.
Also, perhaps someone else will put me straight but I think Giff-Gaff use the o2 network? So, an o2 locked phone (or even Tesco phone) would accept your Wife's Sim Card and work on her existing contract/network? That opens the field a bit if you go down that route - as opposed to an 'unlocked' phone

Looking on ebay (yes, I know it's a minefield!) you can some silly-cheap handsets that would do as a fill-in.
You would have thought any decent company would have given you a cheapo replacement phone to be going on with whilst yours is undergoing repair. Even transfer the number over to save a lot of hasstle,
You can pick up an se for around £50 ok fb marketplace or gumtree etc x
TTYTT09/11/2019 11:53

... Her phone has had a dodgy battery for about a year now and needs …... Her phone has had a dodgy battery for about a year now and needs several charges a day. It can also switch off randomly when it’s hit a good charge left. Apple took a look at the start of the year and just recommended some battery preserving tips but it’s clear now this is a hardware issue...


Observation of Carphonewarehouse's battery warranty statement below. Not good news for Apple device owners:
selfhelp.carphonewarehouse.com/Sel…00}
I also have an iPhone SE. I had the battery changed in May, because it was terrible. Paid the £40 to Apple, and now it is fine. Did she check her battery - Settings > battery > battery health > Maximum capacity. Think mine was at 77% or something.
Get a phone of amazon then return it after
Treboeth09/11/2019 11:58

Moto E5 play unlocked on PAYG O2 £49 + no topup required @ O2Decent phone …Moto E5 play unlocked on PAYG O2 £49 + no topup required @ O2Decent phone for not much money,you could get it from carphonewarehouse as well but that would require £10 top up as well.https://www.hotukdeals.com/deals/unlocked-moto-e5-play-at-cpw-for-449910topup-3313582

I think something like this would be ideal. Would be an good back up phone as well.
Daughters se is only 18 months old and the battery playing up since last update,think Apple up their old tricks.
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