Seth Weintraub and Danny DeSilva contributed to this post.
Over the last few weeks, we’ve been posting links to a mysterious Apple refurbished store that appeared on eBay about a month ago and has been hiding in plain sight ever since. Labeled only “Refurbished Outlet” with hidden corporate information and nothing in the way of contact information or a traceable backend, the store gets impressive 99.7-percent positive reviews from buyers. But, there is no information on where devices are coming from.
We thought Apple might be testing the waters to sell refurbished products directly to customers through eBay, and it seems that’s exactly what is happening. We discovered that this is in fact an Apple-run Store within eBay. It is in trial, and it could open the door to much bigger things. No one would go on the record at eBay, however.
Aside from the image fonts above, which are an uncharacteristic wreck, there are many telltale signs of Apple’s direct involvement. Just like Apple’s own refurbished products, the “refurbished outlet” products all have the following:
Full one-year warranty
Returned to like-new condition
iPads/iPods include a new battery
Received complete burn-in testing
Original OS re-installed
Repackaged with manual and cable
Final quality inspection by Apple
The prices on the products are also identical to the Apple Store’s refurbished prices across the board (below) Read more
It looks like Apple has just started offering refurbished iPad 2s via the Apple online store, as noted by Dealnews and MacRumors. We aren’t going to jump to any upcoming iPad 3 conclusions just yet, but the discount is definitely a welcomed entry price point for new iPad owners in the midst of tablet makers looking to go after the low-end tablet market.
The only iPad 2s currently available include the 32GB and 64GB Wi-Fi+3G models going for $679 and $779, and the 64GB Wi-Fi only model going for $649. It looks like both black and white models are currently available as well as all four carrier options for the 3G models. If you can get your hands on one before they’re gone, it’s listed as shipping in 1-3 business days. Read more