Now that Apple has officially unveiled the iPhone 6, you may be wondering what to do with your ageing iPhone 4s. Luckily, there are tons of retailers that allow you to trade in your old iPhone for cash and store credit. Here’s a brief look at how deals from Best Buy, Gazelle, Amazon, and eBay compare.
How We Compared
For the purposes of this article, all prices below apply to iPhones in “good” condition. This means that your iPhone shows normal signs of wear and tear, but is still fully functional. For example, minor scratches are acceptable, but the screen must be fully in tact and the phone must be completely functional.
The deals below also apply to iPhones with legitimate serial numbers that have been completely factory reset.
The value of your iPhone changes depending on factors like storage capacity and carrier. In this case, we’ve compared prices for all four major carriers in the lowest and highest storage capacities to create a general price range for each iPhone.
It’s also important to note that in some cases, such as with eBay’s pricing estimates, value can change depending on colour. This difference is usually minimal (roughly $US10 or less), and we’ve highlighted one instance in which colour greatly impacted the value of a phone. All values below are estimates, meaning the dollar amount is subject to change depending on the condition of your iPhone.
For on-contract estimates, phones on Verizon and AT&T’s network were usually valued on the higher end of the spectrum. Sprint phones were typically valued on the lower end, while T-Mobile fell right in the middle.
iPhone 5s: Between $US300- $US335 on contract; $US250 unlocked
iPhone 5c: Between $US190-$215 on contract, $US135 unlocked
iPhone 5: Between $US225-$240 on-contract; $US190 unlocked
iPhone 4s: $US125 on-contract; $US80-$95 unlocked
Trade in method: In person or mail-in
Payment type: Best Buy store credit only
iPhone 5s: Between $US274-$400 on contract; $US385-$400 unlocked
iPhone 5c: Between $US134-$250 on contract; $US113-$272 unlocked
iPhone 5:Between $US225-$275 on contract;$183-$265 unlocked
iPhone 4s: Between $US57-$202 on contract; $US104-$131 (up to 32GB only) unlocked
Trade in method: Mail-in only
Payment Type: Amazon gift card only
iPhone 5s: Between $US180-$300 on contract; $US275-$300 unlocked
iPhone 5c: Between $US65-$170 on contract; $US165-$170 unlocked
iPhone 5: Between $US100-$175 on contract; $US165-$175 unlocked
iPhone 4s: Between $US55-$90 on contract; $US90-$110 unlocked
Trade in method: Mail-in only, but Gazelle allows you to wait for 30 days after accepting its offer before shipping your old iPhone.
Payment Type: Choice of cash through PayPal, a check, or Amazon gift card.
iPhone 5s: Between $US325-$580 on contract; $US522-$650 unlocked
iPhone 5c: Between $US270-$398 on contract (eBay values the 16GB green iPhone 5c for T-Mobile extremely high at $US600. We’re not sure why); $US200-$405 unlocked
iPhone 5: Between $US299-$399 on contract; $US325-$349 unlocked
iPhone 4s: Between $US120-$190 on-contract; $US220-$300 unlocked
Trade in method: Mail-in only
Payment Type: Cash via PayPal
Amazon and eBay appear to offer the higher trade-in values for older iPhone models compared to Gazelle and Best Buy. However, you must be willing to only accept store credit in return if you choose to sell your phone on Amazon. The case is the same with Best Buy, but if you don’t mind receiving a gift card in return it can be a solid option for those who would rather take care of the transaction in person.
Gazelle is by far the most flexible in terms of payment options, but doesn’t offer as much money as some of its competitors. If you want cash for your iPhone rather than store credit, eBay offers pretty high cash values, especially for the iPhone 4s.