The first cellphone I owned was a Nokia 2110 in 1996/97. A hand-me-down from my father, who got it while doing work at CSIR in Pretoria. Vodacom had just setup a deal to provide cellular services in Lesotho, creating Vodacom Lesotho. I was literally given a list of numbers to choose from. Since then, I have had countless phones and have written on them relatively extensively for a variety of spaces, also having the opportunity to go to launches both locally and internationally. I’m actually reviewing the Sony Xperia Z5 right now. I have also had two phone contracts for ten years which means that I have a tidy collection of phones that I don’t use anymore.

I have contemplated selling them at different stages of my life, usually when budgets are tight and bills need to be paid – also known as January. Gumtree recently did a “Goods Survey” where they found that “at least one in five top-end users in South Africa had an old second phone somewhere.” With most of us upgrading our contracts every two years or so – and some people even upgrading annually – and it being estimated that there are in the region of 20 million smartphone users in the country, this means that, in drawers like mine, there are millions of Rands just lying around.


According to Gumtree, the average second-hand smartphone sells for R2500 with the most popular brand being Samsung. Top of the list is the Samsung Galaxy A7 which sells at an average of R 7,183. At number two is the iPhone 6 Plus at average price of R 8,564.34. First thing that I wonder when seeing this is why would someone sell a relatively new phone. In their tips for how to best sell your phone on the site, Gumtree suggest that you sell the new phone, as long as your existing one is still functional, to get more cash. I don’t know about that. I like shiny new toys.

 Hopefully you aren’t like me with chargers and accessories lying around the house because the more you have together, the better a price you can get. To get a sense of the value of your phone, Gumtree has a price checker which you can check out HERE.

It is interesting to watch how Gumtree is working constantly at being relevant and top of mind, from advertising extensively and influencer campaigns to campaigns such as this one, which build awareness around the ‘classified marketplace”.


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