iPhone 5 Rumors Cause Huge Smartphone Trade-In Spike On eBay

iPhone 5 Rumors Cause Huge Smartphone Trade-In Spike On eBay

iPhone 5 speculation runs rampant leading up to Apple’s event next month.

iPhone rumors have reached a fever pitch with the word on the street being that Apple is holding its fall iPhone event on September 12th, and mainstream media is even paying attention to the rumor mill during primetime. Everyone wants to know about Apple’s next smartphone, including millions of iPhone 4 owners with expiring contracts.

What do you do when you want to buy a new smartphone? You sell your old one. That’s why eBay has seen a huge 70% spike in used phone trade-ins during the last few days.

CNET reports:

According to the online sales site, submissions to its trade-in program increased 70 percent in the past three days, when compared with the same period the week before.

The company says that during that span “nearly” 100,000 smartphones were offered up for trade-in by people using the company’s Instant Sale program. Among the Apple phones that people offered to trade-in, eBay says the 16GB model of the iPhone 4S tops the list, followed by the 8GB iPhone 4 and 32GB iPhone 4S.

Sites like eBay and Gazelle always see massive amounts of used iPhone trade-ins during the weeks leading up to an Apple announcement. 89% of eBay’s smartphone trade-ins during the week of the iPhone 4S’s October 2011 launch were old iPhones. In the weeks leading up to the third-gen iPad event, Gazelle saw a 400% increase in used iPad trade-ins.

Old iPhones lose value when a new iPhone is announced, so you’ll get more if you sell sooner rather than later.

  • aardman

    Trade-ins? Do you mean eBay has an exclusive, advanced stash of iPhone 5s that they are exchanging for old smartphones + money? Because that’s what “trade-in” means, you know.

  • Tallest_Skil

    Trade-ins? Do you mean eBay has an exclusive, advanced stash of iPhone 5s that they are exchanging for old smartphones + money? Because that’s what “trade-in” means, you know.

    There’s no syntactic ambiguity in the article. There’s no possible way you could have come to that conclusion.

  • extra_medium

    1. What are these people doing without a phone for a month?
    2. Who is buying these devices right before the launch of new phone? Even if they planned on getting the old model they’ll still pay less if they wait..

  • Passport88

    So if people are selling their iPhones now before the new iPhone comes out, what are they using meanwhile? I am usually a fan of cultofmac.com but this article makes no sense.

    Could it be that the spike occurs because a lot of people sign up during summer months so their plans expire in summer two years later?

  • Tallest_Skil

    So if people are selling their iPhones now before the new iPhone comes out, what are they using meanwhile? I am usually a fan of cultofmac.com but this article makes no sense.

    Oh, it’s true. It also makes perfect sense logically; people have been doing this since spring 2008 when waiting for the “iPhone 2″.

    They just use their old flip phone or whatever. Seriously, these people keep their half-decade old phone and use it when they don’t have their iPhones on them.

About the author

Alex HeathAlex Heath is a staff writer at Cult of Mac and co-host of the CultCast. He has been quoted by the likes of the BBC, KRON 4 News, and books like "ICONIC: A Photographic Tribute to Apple Innovation." If you want to pitch a story, share a tip, or just get in touch, additional contact information is available on his personal site. Twitter always works too.

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