What is Tech Aftermarket?
The tech aftermarket is a segment of buyers and sellers of used and refurbished technical equipment. Retail costs are often a fraction of the manufacturer's suggested retail price (MSRP).
Most of the equipment is sold by wholesalers who dismantle the unusable equipment and reprocess viable equipment, often with salvaged parts. Equipment beyond reuse is recycled for precious metals and other recoverable and reusable materials.
The tech aftermarket is also known as the IT aftermarket.
Tech second market sellers often offer their own warranty service and 24/7 technical support. Not all secondary technical goods are used or renovated. Some of them are actually new and have never used equipment from various sources: manufacturer overstock, canceled projects, corporate bankruptcies, and the changing needs of businesses. Other sources include leasing equipment and the equipment that is removed when upgrades are made.
The tech secondary market includes significant business-to-business (B2B) transactions. For example, a company may not have the exact make, model, or specifications required by a customer. The equipment is bought from another company at a wholesale price and then resold to the customer.
The aftermarket technical support is often more familiar than the manufacturers with a wide range of equipment.
On the negative side, tech aftermarket resellers have little or no relationship with manufacturers whom they consider undesirable competitors and would rather recycle their used technology to sell more new products. Technical updates are often not available from everywhere because the manufacturers still do not support products that are considered out of date and the retailer may not have any support either.
One insidious problem in the secondary technology market is stolen or counterfeit equipment. Reputable resellers go to great lengths to prove their integrity to customers by inspecting the equipment and making sure it is genuine. Often times, resellers guarantee the replacement of any equipment that is considered stolen or counterfeit and cooperate with investigative authorities.
The size of the technology secondary market is difficult to estimate due to the diversity of players and the associated revenues. An estimate of the value of network equipment in the used market alone in 2007 was a $ 2 billion industry.
Devices that have been technologically useful in developed countries are shipped to third world countries where there is a great demand for cheap technology.