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Fox on Tech: What should you do with your old iPhone?

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Fox on Tech: What to do with your old iPhone

Apple unveiled its latest iPhones and watches on Wednesday, but after an upgrade, what do you do with your old phone? In this edition of the Fox on Tech, Jacqui Heinrich takes a look at how to get the most bang for your buck with out-of-date smartphones.

Wednesday’s Apple announcement is the sending of iPhone fans scrambling to stores and their favorite online retail sites, in the hope to be one of the first to get their hands on the new products. The tech giant unveiled new versions of some of the most popular gadgets, including a new Apple watch, and, of course, the iPhone XS. Apple CEO Tim Cook told the crowd in Cupertino that the company is “going to be the iPhone X to the next level – I’m excited to see what is by far the most advanced iPhone we have ever made.”

But the new release provides a well-known problem for users who plan to upgrade right away: what do you do with your old phone? It turns out that there are many people who want them, and you could end up with a surprising amount of money if you play it smart. So whether you have a shiny iPhone X or an old iPhone 5, get ready to start making it work for you once the last time.

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The easiest way to earn money from your old phone is just trade in the current model. Apple offers a trade-in program called GiveBack, which gives customers the option of exchanging their iPhones, or even phones from other brands, such as Samsung and Blackberry. Most of the major providers including AT&T and Verizon – offer similar programs. But be careful – Apple’s standards are high, so expect to get rejected if your phone has large damage or corrosion.

You will get about 30 percent more money on average by going through a buy back site. A number of not-so-reliable sites have sprung up over the years, but there are a number of reliable options, such as Gazelle, which has become something of a go-to site in the past few years for Apple products. Another popular site, Nexworth, is offering more than $400 for a used iPhone-X, in good condition.

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But for the most bang for your buck, experts suggest trying an online auction site like eBay. You will get lots of eyes on your list, and the prices tend to be higher than the buy-back sites. Just be careful of that not-so-hidden costs – eBay fees by 10 percent, and if your customer pays via PayPal another 2.9 percent.

And if none of those ideas appeal to you, you can always go the route of selling your old smartphone in person via Craigslist, Facebook, or an app such as LetGo or OfferUp.

So when is the right time to sell your old iPhone? Now! Prices usually fall quickly when the new models hit the streets, so make your plans as soon as possible for the resale market becomes over-saturated with the product.

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