Screen Shot 2013-08-30 at 10.21.24 AM

Photo from trade-in program training

In line with our reports from earlier this week, Apple has announced that its Apple Store iPhone trade-in-program has launched today. The confirmation comes by way of comment to CNBC.

The trade-in-program is officially called the “iPhone Reuse and Recycling Program” and it is available in Apple Stores across the United States. It is powered in-part by BrightStar…

The trade-in process can be conducted on the store floor, or at the Genius Bar. Apple will not be heavily promoting the program with marketing signage (as of now), but Apple Store employees have been instructed to recommend the program to applicable customers.

Apple Store employees will conduct the trade-in process via the mobile EasyPay devices. A customer can bring in an iPhone 3G, iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, iPhone 4S, and iPhone 5, and receive a gift card to be applied to a new iPhone purchase.

The new iPhone must be purchased during that same transaction and it must be an activated phone on a contract. Apple and BrightStar will create a trade-in-value for the old iPhone based on screen quality, overall hardware quality, button quality, and based off the device having or not having liquid damage.

The traded-in iPhone will be packaged in a plastic bag and shipped to BrightStar for recycling in the United States.

Customers who bring in a damaged iPhone to the Genius Bar may be encouraged to simply trade-up to a new version of the device.

The iPhone trade-in values will consistently fluctuate based on supply and demand, but we’re currently hearing an average of about a $250-$253 value for a 16GB iPhone 5 in good condition. A GSM 8GB iPhone 4 will be worth between $120 and $140, while the CDMA version will be worth around $80. Those prices are significantly lower than the trade-in quotes being offered by competing services.

The iPhone trade-in program is a component of Apple CEO Tim Cook’s new iPhone sales strategy.

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17 Responses to “Apple confirms Apple Store iPhone trade-in program has launched today”

  1. Will this come to the UK eventually?


  2. So do we receive the ‘upgrade’ rate of $199 for a new phone + use our trade-in value against that $199 upgrade charge?


    • I was wondering the same thing. So I have a 5 that’s on contract for another year or so. Do I walk in, get the ~$200 credit for turning that in, and then get the 5S at upgrade pricing and start another two-year contract? Seems too good to be true.


    • That’s definitely too good to be true. No, the iPhone 5s will cost whatever it does in your situation — either full price, or discounted based on contract, and they’ll take $250 off that if you trade in your iPhone.

      Anything else, and Apple takes a bath on their phenomenal profit margins, as there’s no way AT&T is going to subsidize the new phone if you still have time on your contract.


  3. When is the “iPad reuse and recycle program” going to be implemented?


  4. wmilliam96 says:

    So what if I just bought a iPhone 5 a couple months ago? And am still in my contract? Is is 250$ off the 500 dollar phone or what?!


    • Just guessing, but I’d think it’s $250 off of whatever the phone costs you in your situation. If you just bought the 5 on contract, then you’d get $250 off the $650 (or whatever) the full price of the phone is. No way AT&T is going to subsidize a new phone for you after subsidizing your old phone just a few months ago…


  5. Ok, so I just got an account so I could voice my thoughts to all you who want to listen. I personally don’t like Apples trade-in program. They are just trying to make users buy there own products.

    Before Steve died, Apples marketing was a “pull” approach. People “desired” products so they sold themselves. It was either their design, or “apple-genius” that made people want the products, but not it seems to be different. Correct me if i’m wrong, but it seems Apple is using more of a “pull” approach to marketing and trying to get people using their products in different ways that I don’t think are necessarily helpful for the company.

    For example, they now have there own iPhone trade-in program, which is great, however you ONLY get in-store credit, so technically you “HAVE” to buy a Apple product or something in the store that they approve of. There is no more “choice” involved I feel like. They also might offer you a little more so you feel “oblicated” to go with them appoosed to another buyback comapany. These are all tactics to “make” their users buy their products.

    They also are stifling other’s businesses by becoming a “apple-control-freak” summarized it nicely when they said “Well you wont be able to unless you sell your iPhone elsewhere!” Its just another indication that Apple wants control!!!

    I have been seeing the prices that they are offering and they are clearly equal if not above those other buyback companies that have come into the realm like Gazelle.

    But now we are all going to feel slightly “coerced” by the Cupertino stores to “buy” and “trade-in” giving Apple ALL the complete control on the sales and distribution of its Apple IOS devices. Is this something you really want?

    NOT ME!


    • rettun1 says:

      lol, oblicated


    • Cun Con says:

      “I have been seeing the prices that they are offering and they are clearly equal if not above those other buyback companies that have come into the realm like Gazelle.”
      What are you talking about? Apple pay $11 more for 16GB iPhone 4s compared to Gazelle and I don’t have to go through the shipping process or wait for Gazelle to determine the cost. Just go straight to Apple store and get a gift card for it. BTW, almost everyone trading old iPhone for new iPhone. If they want other than iPhone, they would’ve sold theirs on ebay or elsewhere.


    • Seriously? Did you really think apple was going to ignore the tremendous resale value of older iPhones that companies like Gazelle have been taking advantage of all this time? And of course they are only going to let you use that money on the new iPhone. They didn’t spend billions of marketing dollars to let you switch to an Android on a whim. Besides, no one is forcing you to use their trade-in program in the first place.


  6. Cun Con says:

    “The new iPhone must be purchased during that same transaction and it must be an activated phone on a contract”
    wrong information. You’ll get Apple store gift card which can be used for any apple purchase later. According to Apple website:

    “Turn that iPhone, iPad, or computer — Mac or PC — you’re not using anymore into something brand new. Send it to us and we’ll determine if it qualifies for reuse. If it does, that means your device has monetary value that we’ll apply to an Apple Store Gift Card, which you can use for purchases at any Apple Retail Store or the Apple Online Store”


    • PJSacchetta says:

      Not wrong. The new program in Apple stores is not the same as program on their website. The in-store program requires credit to be applied to a new iPhone under contract before you leave store. Don’t correct someone if you don’t know the facts.


  7. Cun Con says:

    BTW, iPhone 4s can be sold on ebay within 24 hrs at $300 and iPhone 5 at $450 in case you want more money. I would rather go to Apple store and trade in iPhone 4s for $230. $70 extra not worth to go through ebay process.