Is there anywhere to buy discontinued, yet new and unused mobile phones? I'm out of ideas!

When it comes to smartphones, I’m not really a fan of change. I’ve had my HTC One Mini 2 for 4 years, and it’s still an amazing phone. Ok, the battery is on its last legs (dies around 40%) and it’s slowed down to the point where switching between apps can literally take 10 seconds… but we’ve been through a lot together… and there is nothing new on the market that catches my eye.

So, I want to buy the same phone again (or the larger M8 or M9), but brand new and sparkly. The problem is that as the older HTC phones have been discontinued, finding a new and unused phone is seemingly impossible.

Sure, there are refurbished models available from Amazon and Game, but they’re essentially second hand, and I have no way of knowing the state of the battery or whether the processor/motherboard has started slowing down.

Is there anywhere online, or any phone store that still sells discontinued unused phones?

There must be a market for a such a thing… surely not every device that has left the factory has been sold…

I’m in the UK if that helps…

No answer to your direct question, but tangential to it you could have the battery replaced on your old phone (if you don’t feel up to the moderate challenge of replacing it yourself.) And there is nothing inherent to solid-state electronics that will make it “slow down,” it is a software problem. You need to backup what you want to backup and format the thing, then reinstall what you need.

I want to strongly reinforce what Darren Garrison has posted. Just replace the battery and backup/reinstall your phone software.

And be very, very careful what you reinstall.

Ebay might be a place to look, but typically these will be used phones. Sometimes the ones called “factory refurbished” are actually unsold phones returned by the carrier. So if ATT used to give out that HTC, when they stop they’ll send their old ones back and these get sold to resellers, and they’ll put them on ebay or wherever.

The original question is rather moot.

“discontinued” ? Sure they sell of bulk phones to the highest bidder.
they get sold by shops, perhaps not your telco’s shop… just other shops.
Who knows, major chains like walmart might get phones outright.

Perhaps you get the phone cheaper from ebay or internet search, if you find the telco labelled box, and you get assured its unlocked so you aren’t locked into that telco… well the firmware still has that telco written into it, you can flash a non-telco rom, and if not, will you get suitable updates to the firmware…, and will the telco’s customization cause a problem.
auction sites may have two categories of new …

  1. still in original packaging unused
  2. new - but packaging opened, damaged, or not in packaging, or item known to be inferior to a new in original packaging, such as repaired … the need to mess with software flashing… well thats a grey area…

One other problem with trying to keep your old phone going forever–the replacement batteries will be old or 3rd party. Other companies will make compatible batteries, but the quality will always be uncertain. You may get a “new” replacement battery, install it, and then find out it can’t hold a charge for very long.

I know this isn’t what you’re really asking for, but you can get a brand-new phone that’s just as good as your old one for not that much money these days. $150 (excuse me, £114) isn’t nothing, but it’s not like you have to spend £600 to get a perfectly decent new phone, with new updated software (despite what Apple’s marketing department wants you to believe). And the software is a pretty big deal; old phones without updated software will have lots of security issues (which could even potentially be why your current phone is so slow).

Beyond eBay, you can often find old tech from 3rd party sellers on Amazon or Newegg. Amazon (granted, the US site) shows them for sale new from “NewTech4u” for $279.

Which brings up the other issue: often newly obsolete stuff sells at a premium rather than the expected markdown. The few people who want to buy the stuff are really committed to buying it so sellers can afford to charge far more than its value compared to other products on the market. For $235, you could get a Moto G6 Plus which is superior (often significantly) in every way.

Darren Garrison is correct that a slowdown on your phone is a software issue but sometimes it’s not a truly correctable one. As even common apps (Gmail, Facebook, Twitter, Google Maps, etc) are updated to take advantage of new and faster technology, hanging on to older tech can mean it’s never going to run quite as well as when you first bought it.

$150 seems to be a lot less than he’d be paying for a replacement HTC One Mini 2.

This is something that I’ve considered, but the fact my phone has a serious downturn in performance within the last 2 weeks suggests something critical that can’t easily be corrected. It’s not malware or anything like that either. I remember in 2015 this phones battery went crazy and died around 89% consistently, so I had to send it away for a replacement. Nothing as drastic this time, but still, some apps like Whatsapp and Chrome are seriously lagging when just a few weeks ago were largely fine.

This is probably a problem with an app. Perhaps a new app that is doing something bad or all-too-often an existing app that was updated and is now off kilter. Sadly, many popular apps get bought up by somebody sleazy who starts doing sleazy things on the device.

E.g., there’s a cryptocurrency miner out there that is increasingly being added to formerly legitimate apps.

99.999% of the time the cause of a computing device “running slower” is software, not hardware.

Technically, “a computing device” includes desktop computers with spinning rust system drives. Which cause slowdowns when failing.

When I was looking for a Lumia 950, brand new ones were available on Amazon. Indeed, I’ve just checked and Amazon UK has 8 new HTC Ones available.

Just to give you another calibration point guitario

I broke my phone recently through my own stupid fault and I bought a Moto G6 play for £160.
Unlocked and ready for a sim. The thing is a beast. Fast, big, clear screen and the battery appears to be a perpetual motion machine. I really like it, it does everything I need it to and more.

I mention it because I was going down your path. I spent a lot of time trying to find the same (discontinued) model that I had but It was hard and unused ones were about £100 and used ones of uncertain provenance were not that much less.
I eventually decided that I might as well spend just a little more and get the much updated model. I’m glad I did (but of course your finances or preferences may differ)

Which is the main reason I did not say 100% of the time!