Apple’s newest iPhone SE suggests that even Apple is aware of the need for cheaper phones. Whether you’re in the market for a new SE or still dreaming of the iPhone 11, don’t just toss your aging phone in a drawer when you upgrade. Sell your iPhone! That old hunk of glass is more valuable than you might think.There are quite a few services that will give you cash or store credit for a used iPhone. We’ve compared some popular services for trading in an old device for cash or store credit. Most of these services accept Samsung and Google devices, and all of them take iPhones.Updated for June 2020: We’ve tweaked phones and pricing, and removed Decluttr due to poor experiences on staff and other reports around the web.If you buy something using links in our stories, we may earn a commission. Learn more. You can also support our reporting by purchasing a 1-year WIRED subscription for (Discounted).First, Some Tips to Get a High Resale PriceComparing prices on all these services highlights some tips for maximizing the resale value of your phone. First and foremost, take care of your phone. Buy a good case (check out our case recommendations) and consider a screen protector (AmFilm protectors work well). They’ll keep your device looking new, which is the best way to ensure you get the most money possible when you sell.Always buy your phone unlocked. That will maximize your resale value. Unlocked phones work on any wireless network that they have the antenna to support. There’s no reason to lock yourself to one carrier. Generally, unless a carrier tells you a phone is unlocked, it probably isn’t, especially if you buy it on a payment plan.The last thing to do before you run off to cash in your old phone is to back up all your data using iCloud or iTunes. One gotcha to watch out for: If you back up data using iTunes, not iCloud, make sure you back up your text messages, which sometimes include photos and videos you haven’t saved to your Camera Roll. Remember to unpair your Apple Watch if you have one, and wipe your phone’s data as well.1. Best for Pristine iPhonesSwappaAn eBay clone of sorts, Swappa seeks to eliminate some of the problems associated with eBay: high seller fees, poor seller-buyer communication tools, and too many poor-quality devices. You won’t be able to sell your iPhone here unless it’s in good shape, fully functional, with no damage.So long as your phone meets Swappa’s listing criteria and you’re willing to put in a little effort, this is where you’ll get the most money for your old device. As you would on eBay, you’ll need to put together a listing with photos. Be sure to take the case off your phone, and be honest about the condition. Remember to factor in shipping when setting your sale price.Currently an 64-gigabyte iPhone 8 model sells for about $260, with the 256-gigabyte model going for $294. An iPhone XR averages $450 to $520, depending on the storage capacity.2. Best for Reliable CashGazelleGazelle is the old hand in the world of used phones. The company has been buying phones since 2006, and it has the (simplest) process.You fill out an online form and answer some questions about your device—whether it works, which carrier it’s tied to, and if there’s any cosmetic damage. You’ll then get an offer based on the answers you give. If you accept the offer, Gazelle will send a box complete with shipping label, and you’ll ship the phone in for inspection. Once the company has looked over your device and verified it’s in the condition you said it was, you’ll be paid—usually in about seven to 10 days. Payment can be in the form of a check, PayPal, or Amazon gift card.A factory-unlocked, 64-GB iPhone XR in good condition will get you $244. A 64-GB iPhone 8 for Verizon will net you $110. Gazelle sometimes runs promos around new device launches, so keep an eye on the site for promotional offers.3. Best for a Broken iPhoneuSellIf your iPhone is damaged or the battery will no longer hold a charge, uSell will still buy it. Of the send-it-in-style services, uSell offered the most for damaged devices. We were offered $70 for an iPhone XR that doesn’t even power on.It’s something of a hybrid service, since you aren’t actually selling your phone to uSell but rather to buyers it works with. Still, in practice it works more like Gazelle than Swappa.4. Easiest Way to SellPhotograph: AppleApple’s iPhone Trade-InApple’s Trade-In program doesn’t always offer the best prices, but if you’re buying a new iPhone, Apple will quickly apply your credit to the new device. Beware that Apple will pay top dollar only for absolutely pristine phones.At the time of writing, an iPhone 8 in good condition will get you $120, while an iPhone XR can get up to $260. The other option is to trade in for a discount on a new phone. If you have a pristine-condition iPhone XR, you can trade it in to get an iPhone 11 for $399 ($300 off) or an iPhone 11 Pro at $599 ($400 off).We don’t recommend it, but if you’re the sort of person who must upgrade to a new iPhone every year, you might save some money using Apple’s iPhone upgrade program. Like a lease, you perpetually pay for your phone but get a new one after 12 months, which makes it cheaper than buying a new unlocked phone every year.A Few More OptionsBest Buy: Best Buy offers trade-ins online or in participating stores. It won’t take damaged devices, and you won’t get cash, just store credit. But if you need something from Best Buy anyway, it’s a relatively no-hassle option, especially if you go the in-store route.Carrier Trade-Ins: Your service provider probably has a buy-back program of some sort. Verizon, AT&T, Sprint, and T-Mobile will all buy back your device, though generally for far less than the other options in this list.eBay: There’s always eBay. While personal experience has soured me on eBay lately—the number of buyer scams seems to far outweigh the number of legitimate buyers—it is still one of the most popular places to sell things online. The site even has a special form for selling your iPhone.Amazon and Others: There are other device-centric swapping sites, like NextWorth and GadgetGone. Walmart and Amazon also have device trade-in programs, but none of them offered as good a deal as the options above.Avoid These ServicesDecluttr
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