Apple confirms launch of Apple store iPhone trade-in program

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iphoneBy Chris O’Brien, Los Angeles Times

Apple on Friday launched a program that allows customers to trade in their used iPhones for credit toward a new one.

The long-rumored trade-in program expands an Apple Recycling service already in place that lets customers mail in their old gadgets for credit or gift cards. Users will now be able to take their iPhones into Apple stores as they have been already been able to do with their old iPods.

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In a statement released Friday, Apple said: “iPhones hold great value. So, Apple Retail Stores are launching a new program to assist customers who wish to bring in their previous-generation iPhone for reuse or recycling. In addition to helping support the environment, customers will be able to receive a credit for their returned phone that they can use toward the purchase of a new iPhone.”

To be eligible for the Apple trade-in deal, the iPhone has to be undamaged by water and in good working order. At the store, an employee will evaluate the phone’s make and age and offer between $120 and $250 that can be used toward a new iPhone. A two-year contract is required as well.

Apple will face stiff competition from third-party firms that have already been letting consumers trade in their old phones for cash and credit.

A service called NextWorth, for instance, lets users get an estimate and mail in their gadgets for cash that can be used anywhere.

And on Thursday, BestBuy announced that it was increasing the value of its mobile phone trade-in programs and offering discounts on new phones.

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