1. iPhone SE 3

The best value for money


The iPhone SE 3, while more affordable than the iPhone 13 launched months before, has the same A15 processor, providing a more-than-excellent performance, and is also compatible with iOS 17. The 4.7-inch is a small size when compared to current standard models, which can be good for the hands, pockets, and bags of kids and teenagers.

✅ Pros

  • Very affordable for a recent model
  • Good performance
  • Comfortable to use

❌ Cons

  • Limited storage in the cheapest model (64GB)

2. iPhone 13 mini

The most balanced


The iPhone 13 mini is one of the best phones for kids you can find. The most notable difference between the 13 and the 13 mini is its size (6.1 inches vs. 5.4 inches), which can be perfect for your children. Even though the mini is cheaper, the battery lasts considerably more, from 13 to 17 hours of video playback. Nonetheless, it still has good battery life.

✅ Pros

  • No critical differences between the iPhone 13
  • Superb performance
  • Excellent battery life
  • Compact design

❌ Cons

  • It can be a bit pricey for its size
  • No triple back camera

3. iPhone 14 Plus

The best display

Yes, the iPhone 14 Plus can be perfect for kids and adults alike, although it’s the least expensive large display you can get right now: 6.7″. Some kids will enjoy learning apps and watching videos on larger displays, even if it means sacrificing some comfort due to the increased size and weight. And, in this case, the OLED Super Retina XDR is hard to beat.

✅ Pros

  • Large beautiful screen
  • OLED display technology
  • Extraordinary performance

❌ Cons

  • Difficult to hold in one hand
  • A bit heavy
  • It can be expensive

4. iPhone 12 mini

The best mid-range iPhone for kids


The mini releases of the iPhone can be an excellent choice for kids due to their lightweight, smaller displays and ease of use. Unfortunately, Apple did not release an iPhone 14 mini, and it’s unlikely that we will have more mini models in the future. Whatever the case may be, the iPhone 12 mini is cheaper than the iPhone 13 mini and still offers a great performance nowadays.

✅ Pros

  • Lightweight
  • Very affordable
  • Good performance

❌ Cons

  • Battery life could be better

5. iPhone XS

The best affordable iPhone for kids


Although released in 2018, the iPhone XS is one of the best iPhones for kids. The reason is simple: it’s pretty cheap, still compatible with iOS 17, has a decent battery life, and the display size is something in between a current big and small phone. If budget is your primary concern, you can opt for the iPhone XS, but keep in mind it may not be supported for many more years.

✅ Pros

  • Very affordable
  • Not big, not small screen size
  • Face ID

❌ Cons

  • Support will likely end in 2025
  • Average performance

How to choose the best iPhone for kids

In creating this list of the best iPhones for kids and selecting the most appropriate releases, we have considered the following points. Since some of them are now discontinued or hard to find, we have focused on refurbished models that can save you substantial money.

Safety concerns

Refurbished iPhones are safe and double-checked to ensure the best quality product is shipped to you. Make sure you are only buying from trusted merchants with strict quality controls to receive a device in perfect working condition with a warranty.

iOS is safer and poses less risk of viruses and malware. Moreover, if all family members use Apple products, it is better for your kids to use iPhones or iPads due to the Apple ecosystem. Starting from iOS 12, iPhones have a screen time management feature that allows parents to monitor and manage family-shared Apple devices.

Ease of use

The iPhones and their operating system, iOS, are reasonably easy to use and intuitive. Still, a child could have some trouble holding a big-screen smartphone, so it’s essential to know the dimensions of each iPhone.

Since your kids will probably want to play some games on their new device, we recommend getting an iPhone compatible with the latest iOS 17 to ensure the most recent updates and compatibility with all new apps.


Since kids are experimenting with technology that may be new to them in this digital era, a larger display could make this easier. A big screen doesn’t necessarily mean that you’ll be spending more. The best iPhone for your children can be an older model with less power than an iPhone 14 or an iPhone 15 but whose display will make them learn and play more efficiently.

Person using an iPhone

Other parents may prefer smaller screen sizes so their children can use the smartphone more independently and more comfortably due to their small hands. In this guide, we have included big and small displays so you can choose whatever suits you best depending on the use case.


We know how much kids break stuff, right? The cost of repairing or replacing a new and shiny iPhone can be significant. If they manage to break the phone, it could mean a significant loss. However, a refurbished iPhone can relieve you of so much worry since they are more affordable. Of course, they could break it any way, but repairing or replacing them would be a completely different thing for your wallet.

Contract or SIM-only plan

Phone contracts can be sizeable investments, especially if you’re going for top-end phones. If you buy a refurbished iPhone for your kids, you don’t have to start a contract with a network and waste even more money every month; go with a SIM-only plan from a network of your choice.

If you still wish to have a contract, look for capped contracts to stay in control of your bills, so your kids can’t exceed their monthly allowance. Kids are curious and can drain your monthly data allowance in no time!

Where to buy the best iPhone for your kids?

This is the crucial part. The market has many options for refurbished iPhones from various online and physical stores. The process of finding the best deal for your child can be tiring. On RefurbMe, we make this easy for you by comparing prices and deals coming from the best in business.

Remember that Apple refurbishes and sells its iPhones with the same quality standards as factory-new devices. This program is called Apple Certified Refurbished. Even though they can be more expensive than other refurbished iPhones offered by third-party sellers, they are difficult to distinguish from brand-new phones.

Take a look at some of Apple’s best offers for refurbished iPhones here. And, of course, don’t hesitate to look at the deals we have included with every iPhone above.


Final thoughts

These refurbished iPhones are an excellent solution for your little ones. Not only are they cheaper, but they also come with a warranty, just like a new one would. They’re also rigorously tested, with any parts deemed sub-new-quality being repaired, refurbished, or replaced. In addition, iOS is exceptionally intuitive and safe and has rigorous parental controls.