Apple will be introducing a new “Reuse and Recycle” trade-in program for iPhones at its retail stores, beginning on August 30th, according to multiple sources. The well-connected Mark Gurman of 9to5Mac has learned details of how this program will function.
The step-by-step process will involve an Apple retail employee assessing the value of the used iPhone, based on operability, display quality, button quality, overall hardware damage, engraving, liquid damage and the ability to be powered on and off.
iPhone 3G, iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, iPhone 4S and iPhone 5 models will be accepted through this trade-in program, so long as they are in functioning condition. Trade-in values will be slightly below competition, according to the report, with an 8 GB iPhone 4 (GSM) going for between $120 and $140 on average. An undamaged 16 GB iPhone 5 on AT&T would be worth around $255, while an unlocked version would score you about $279. Values will fluctuate based on device condition and supply and demand.
This program will launch first in the United States, and could be expanded to international markets in the future. The value of the used iPhone is put onto an Apple Store gift card, and must be used towards the purchase of a new iPhone at the time of visit. The traded-in iPhone is put in a plastic bag to be shipped and processed by BrightStar, and will reportedly be kept within the United States for potential resale. The customer will have an opportunity to back up his or her iPhone before handing it in, and gets their old SIM card back.
This trade-in program comes just weeks after Apple CEO Tim Cook expressed concern about the lack of iPhones being sold at Apple Stores themselves. While the overall number of iPhone sales is strong, Cook feels that more of the handsets could be sold directly within the company’s brick-and-mortar retail chain. In the coming months, we will see if this trade-in program is effective at mitigating that problem.