Editor's Note: This content was originally published on
by Tim Parker.
According to a new report, if you're in the smartphone business and
you're not offering a trade-in program, you're probably losing
business or not gaining new customers.
That's probably why
) is reportedly planning to get into the smartphone trade-in
The study, titled
"Trade In, Trade Up, Trade Out,"
surveyed 1,000 smartphone users in July. It found that 55% of
respondents said they would trade in their old phone when it came
time to upgrade, while 60% said they would consider the value of a
retailer's trade-in program when choosing their next carrier.
This study proved that these programs represent significant value
to customers, and that's why the major carriers, including
) have each not only embraced trade-ins, but recently revamped the
programs to allow customers to upgrade sooner for a monthly fee.
An iPhone 4S, for example, has a trade-in value of around $200,
) offering as much $300 for the 16 MB model.
Apple is reportedly getting into the trade-in program as well.
, Apple will partner with Brightstar Corp., the same company that
runs trade-in programs for AT&T and T-Mobile, to offer it to
customers at its retail locations. Customers who bring their old
iPhone to an Apple store will receive cash.
Why does a high-end company like Apple want to be in the secondhand
business? Because it's profitable. The company will be able to
profit from a growing demand for unsubsidized phones that are
preferred by consumers in markets outside of North America.
There might be another reason. According to
, less than 15% of iPhones sold in the US come from an Apple retail
store and CEO Tim Cook doesn't like that. Implementing a trade-in
program could help to draw more customers in to the store to
purchase a phone directly from Apple, especially if the trade-in
program were just as good or better than those of the carriers.
Along with the rumored trade-in program, a new version of the Apple
Store iPhone app alerts customers when they are eligible for an
iPhone upgrade. It's clear that Apple is stepping up its efforts to
capture more direct sales of its mobile devices.
Disclosure: At the time of this writing, Tim Parker was long
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