With the iPhone 5S & 5C announcement just around the corner, now might the ideal time to sell off your iPhone 5, 4S or 4. It’s a good idea to sell your current iPhone second-hand and put the cash towards the latest iPhone.
This guide to selling an iPhone second-hand will help you get the most from your current model. Follow these tips to get the best deal for a second-hand iPhone.
Updated on 28 August with details about Apple's trade-in program.
When should I sell my iPhone to get an iPhone 5S?
Right now! If you’re serious about picking up an iPhone 5S when it launches, and are looking to offload a current iPhone then the sooner you do it the more cash you’ll get. And if you leave it too close to the launch date (when all the newspapers are reporting on the imminent launch of a new model) then you’ll lose out.
Although this seems common sense it has been tracked by online site. NextWorth, who note a drop in the value of iPhone models prior to a new launch. “There is a predictable 15-20 percent value decline seen across all older iPhone models in the six-week period surrounding the new iPhone launch,” Jeff Trachsel, CMO of NextWorth says. We suggest you look into quotes for the iPhone 5, iPhone 4S and iPhone 4 right now.
We expect the new iPhone to be announced on 10 September, and be on sale sometime later in September. A glut of devices starts to appear about 2-4 weeks before a new phone debuts, so now is the time to sell of the iPhone.
This NextWorth chart shows how much the price of iPhones alters in the run up to a new launch
Will Apple buy my old iPhone?
Somewhat surprisingly the answer to this question appears to be yes. Apple is preparing to launch an iPhone trade-in program next month, which will enable the owners of older iPhone models to exchange their device for a newer iPhone model at an Apple retail store, at a discounted price.
The report suggests that the returned iPhones will be recycled, rather than shipped overseas and resold.
The new phone has to be a contract phone, and it has to be activated at the store, according to the report.
Apple will give you money off the new iPhone if you trade in your existing model, this will depend on the age and model of iPhone you are handing in. It will make purchasing a new phone more accessible.
We are yet to receive confirmation that Apple will run the same scheme in the UK. We'll update this story as soon as we hear.
Read Get money off the new iPhone with trade-in program ahead of iPhone 5S release for more information.
How much is a second-hand iPhone worth?
How much you get for a second-hand iPhone depends on the model that you’ve got, and where you sell it. Typically you’ll get more cash from a private sale than from a shop or services (as they need to include a mark-up when they sell it on). But it’s less hassle to take it to somewhere like Computer Exchange or Cash Generators.
Here are some guide prices courtesy of Mac second-hand experts Mac2Sell.
iPhone 5 second-hand price guide:
iPhone 5 16GB: £320
iPhone 5 32GB: £360
iPhone 5 64GB: £420
iPhone 4S second-hand price guide:
iPhone 4S 16GB: £220
iPhone 4S 32GB: £250
iPhone 4S 64GB: £320
iPhone 4 second-hand price guide:
iPhone 4 8GB: £140
iPhone 4 16GB: £160
iPhone 4 32GB: £190
Where should I sell my iPhone?
You’ll get more selling it on eBay, Amazon or Gumtree: all of which offer a lively environment for second-hand iPhones. If you sell it via eBay and Amazon you’ll also have to pay a service charge, so Gumtree is the way to go for a complete private. sale. Here are some sites to check-out before you start.
How much will the iPhone 5S cost?
We’re not fully sure on this one. The iPhone 5 ranges from £529 - £699, so we expect the iPhone 5S to be at least the same price. However the presence of a new gold model suggests that Apple might be taking the high-road.
Apple is also assumed to be ready to launch a cheaper plastic model iPhone 5C. How much this costs and how it compares to the iPhone 5S is something of a mystery. There is one theory going around that Apple will side-step all the competition with both a phone that is cheaper than others on the market, and one that is considerably more high-end than others. We will only find out for sure on 10 September.
Should I trade the iPhone in?
It’s really up to you but the wave of iPhones being traded in just before a new model launches suggests that many other people do the same. You will lose a substantial amount of cash, getting both less for your iPhone than it was worth at launch and having to buy a new model. We generally advise people to upgrade every two-steps, so from iPhone 5 to 6 or iPhone 4S to iPhone 5S because the different range of features tends to be more noticeable.
Still you only need one phone and it could be the difference between paying £200 and the full £529. Good luck if you decide to sell your iPhone.