CYaBro:(Emphasis added by me)
There is a big difference between a refurbished product and a remanufactured product.
I have seen refurbished iOS devices from many of the online daily deal sites, and places like that.
They are a device that has maybe had a new screen put on it, or a new battery put in it (not by an Apple Authorised Service Provider!), and then some attempt to clean the outside of the device to make it look new.
If I put an Apple remanufactured device and a brand new device in front of you, you would not be able to tell the difference because there is no difference.
If I put a refurbished device and a brand new device in front of you it wouldn't be hard to tell which is which.
Really? I feel your post confuses the issue, because on Apples website they use the term "refurbished" but make it sound like you've described 'remanufactured'...(which is a term retailers and consumer shouldn't/wouldnt be subjected to as I believe this is Apples internal process)
See this screenshot from their website today:
I've seen Apple refurbished products before and they are as you describe, with being "Good as new".
I agree that 3rd party refurbished is not necessarily as good, and might have had anything done to make it work.