Over the last decade, there has been an explosion in mobile device usage world-wide. It is estimated that one in five people now own a smartphone. Smartphone and tablet models are constantly evolving and the adaptation of new models occurs rapidly. In order to reduce electronic waste, it is imperative that old devices are recycled responsibly. In the United States alone, some figures suggest that up to 70% of heavy metals currently in landfills are from discarded electronics. Many unused phones are simply sitting in drawers collecting dust, statistics show that most people aren’t aware that these old devices can potentially be a way of getting some extra cash.
iPhones and iPads are known for holding their value extremely well. That famous Apple build quality and usability can holdup for many years. With new models on the horizon, selling iPhone or iPad to a mobile device recycling company has never been easier nor more lucrative. Some of the previous generation devices can be worth more than $350.00! This is money that could be used to subsidize the purchase of a new device.
Typically, when you trade in your device to a recycling site the process goes like this:
1. You place an order with them and they send you a box to mail it back in. Some sites allow you to print off a prepaid label and use your own box. If you are trading in an iOS device, it is important to ensure that “Find My iPhone” is disabled. This can be done by going to the iCloud menu in the Settings app.
2. You mail the device. Some sites offer Fedex or UPS, but the most common shipping method is USPS.
3. They receive your device and ensure that the device meets their standards. When using these sites, it is important to describe your item accurately. For example, don’t select “new” condition if the screen of the device is cracked.
4. They will issue your payment and the transaction is complete.
While there are many well-established companies that offer these services, one of the rising stars in this industry is Exchange It. Exchange It allows you to sell iPhones or iPads securely and easily. Their claim to fame is that they are the “Fastest paying electronic trade-in site in America”, stating that most payments are processed within 1-business day of receiving the item. Payment options include PayPal and check by mail. We imagine that the first option would be faster (it can take 3-4 days for a mailed check to arrive.)
We did a price comparison with some other sites and found that Exchange It offered not only fast turn-around times, but also significantly higher prices than many of their competitors. For example, their price was 20% higher than other companies on the iPhone 4 16GB (AT&T) model. This price includes the bonus that the customer would receive if they had the carrier unlock the device. Many other sites offer a similar bonus for unlocking your device. Cellular devices need to be unlocked before they can be used internationally, but doing so often makes them more valuable.