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You may recall we broke the story that Apple’s iPhone trade program, launched in the U.S. in August, was coming to the UK. It’s now launched – but you may not want to use it.

Apple says it will offer up to £175 for iPhone models in its UK stores. Apple offers up to $250 in its U.S.-based locations. The program allows a customer with an iPhone 3G or newer to receive a gift card with the trade-in-value for use towards a new iPhone. The new device must be activated in-store.

An online version, based on a different recycling firm, launched in the UK last year.

But for those who really don’t want the hassle of dealing with private sales, it’s at least an option to make that shiny new iPhone 5s a little cheaper …

The UK smartphone market is quite different to that in the USA. In the UK, you can choose between a contract that includes a subsidised handset, paying close to U.S. prices for both, or you can opt to buy the handset at full retail in order to benefit from a much cheaper SIM-only contract.

Outright purchase with low monthly contract is the cheaper option for those who can afford the initial outlay. The full price of the iPhone 5s in the UK starts at £549 ($876) for the 16GB model and rises to £709 ($1133) for the 64GB model. A SIM-only contract with unlimited calls, texts and data can be picked up for £15-20 ($24-32) a month.

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5 Responses to “As expected, Apple Store iPhone trade-in program reaches the UK”

  1. There is no way, as of now, somebody is going to pay $600 for a mint iPhone 4S, when they can be a model two years newer for a difference of $49. The most you could get off of eBay now would be $400-$500, which there is still a substantial difference from which Apple is offering. But in no way would you get $600 off of eBay.