Phones 4U was forced into administration in September last year when EE and Vodafone neglected to renew their contracts with the retailer. Today the administrators are selling off games consoles, smartphones, tablets, smartwatches, headphones and more, plus bulk deals on cases and chargers, dirt cheap - but with the auctions ending between 2pm and 4.30pm you'll need to get in there quick.
The goods are being sold via an online auction by John Pye & Sons Corporate Asset Management. At the time of writing these were some of the deals available from Phones 4U:
• Beats By Dr Dre Monster headphones from £77
• Sony PlayStation 3 from £114
• Nintendo Wii U from £125
• Microsoft Xbox 360 from £138
• Buffalo Portable DVD player from £25
• Sony SmartWatch 2 from £22
• Philips Hue Personal Wireless Lighting Set from £99
• Sony SBH80 Bluetooth headset from £42
• Apple iPhone 5c 8GB from £148
• Samsung Galaxy S III Mini 8GB from £62
• Samsung Galaxy Fame from £37
• Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 from £140
• Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 7in from £49
• Kazam Life B4 mobile phone from £14
• Apple iPhone 4 16GB from £160
• Apple iPhone 5 32GB (black) from £230
• Apple iPhone 5 64GB (black) from £270
• Apple iPhone 5 32GB (white) from £248
• Apple iPhone 5 64GB (white) from £260
• Apple iPad mini 16GB from £140
• Apple iPad Air 16GB from £280
• Sony Xperia Tablet Z 16GB from £130
• Sony Xperia Miro from £40
• Sony Xperia M from £39
• Sony Xperia S from £49
• Sony Xperia SP from £72
• Sony Xperia Z from £135
• Sony Xperia Z Ultra from £200
• Sony Xperia E from £38
• Sony Xperia E1 from £31
• LG G3 from £240
• ZTE Grand X from £54
• BlackBerry Curve 9360 from £33
• BlackBerry 9270 from £43
• BlackBerry Q5 from £100
• BlackBerry Z10 from £125
• Motorola Moto E from £34
• Motorola Moto G from £56
To pick up one of these bargains head to the online auction site, find your item and click Bid. You can then either sign in or register for an account.
What's the catch?
Unlike an ebay auction, the prices aren't all inclusive so you'll need to calculate the total price you'll pay to work out if you're getting a good deal or not. On top of the 'bid price' you need to pay a buyer's premium of 20 percent, and then add VAT - if you're not a business - which is another 20 percent. Then, if you're paying via credit card, add a further 2.5 percent.
This makes some of the items much less of a bargain than they appear. Aside from avoiding all the 8GB iPhone 5Cs on offer (8GB of non-expandable memory isn't nearly enough these days) the raft of 32GB and 64GB iPhone 5 models aren't as attractive as they seem.
The example here shows a 32GB white iPhone 5 for £260 - one of the lowest prices we could find. Even if you were the only bidder and managed to win it for £260, you'd actually pay £375 with the additional fees. This doesn't include shipping, and since there are no shipping facilities, you'd need to physically collect your item or arrange your own courier: both methods incurring more expense.
And the extra bad news is that all items come with no warranty, which means you may well be better off paying a little extra and buying the same item from Amazon or another retailer. A 32GB iPhone 5, SIM free from Amazon, for example will cost you £400.
If you're still keen you can browse the listings on the auction website, and auctions end from 2pm today. You'll need to register for an account, and it's well worth reading the auction FAQs, too.
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