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Thread: Apple's iPhone Upgraders Leave Roughly $13.5 Billion in Old Hardware to Collect Dust

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  1. #1
    MMi Staff Writer Akshay Masand's Avatar
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    Default Apple's iPhone Upgraders Leave Roughly $13.5 Billion in Old Hardware to Collect Dust


    According to research group OnePoll’s “Mobile Mountain Study,” conducted for resale website SellCell.com, iPhone owners are leaving a collective pile of unused legacy hardware on the table estimated to be worth $13.4 billion on the resale market according to MarketWatch. The number has grown from the year-ago period, which saw about $9 billion worth of iPhones stashed away. Looking at the bigger picture, the percentage of owners who keep smartphones rather than selling them has decreased from last year, dropping to 50% from 55% one year earlier. The overall trade-in value of mothballed phones is up to $47 billion, a significant jump from $34 billion a year ago.

    As for what people do with their old phones, 20% said they gift them to family and friends, 12% donate to charity and 9% simply throw them away. According to the poll, only 18% of users showed concern over security issues related to selling or giving away handsets, down 23% last year. As to why Americans “hoard” old phones instead of selling or gifting, the survey found 40% keep legacy devices as spares, 36% “don’t know what else to do with them” and 17% of respondents were just “too lazy.”

    Although SellCell.com obviously has skin in the game when it comes to smartphone resales, the results from OnePoll are interesting considering that Apple instituted an in-store trade-in system last year to boost sales of new handsets. According to SellCell.com, many consumers don’t know about trade-in services and thus leave massive amounts of money sitting in sock drawers and shoeboxes across the nation.

    As many of you probably already know, a number of dedicated online services, such as Gazelle, have popped up to take advantage of the second-hand smartphone market. Even big-box retailer Walmart and Internet sales giant Amazon are getting in on the action with sometimes generous offers on year-old equipment. These big name companies usually take advantage of the time period surrounding new product releases to build their supplies or push promotions.

    Source: MarketWatch

    Twitter: @AkshayMasand

  2. #2
    .artwork assassin Jato_BZ's Avatar
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    I keep mine as testers...5S,5 & 2x4S's...3 out of 4 jailbroken...
    Twitter ID: @Jato_BZ
    .artwork Assassin / Emoji Extractor

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  4. #3
    Go Wings Zokunei's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Akshay Masand View Post
    According to the poll, only 18% of users showed concern over security issues related to selling or giving away handsets, down 23% last year.
    I would think that wouldn't cause security issues if done correctly.

  5. #4
    My iPhone is a Part of Me fanboyfanboy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jato_BZ View Post
    I keep mine as testers...5S,5 & 2x4S's...3 out of 4 jailbroken...
    Same, 3GS, 4S, 5S all kept for testing

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  7. #5
    Green Apple
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    I keep my older devices in case I lose or break my newer one.

  8. #6
    What's Jailbreak?
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    I always trade mine in for store credit cause it's easy, even though that's probably the same as getting raped in the ***

  9. #7
    iPhoneaholic quidam_brujah's Avatar
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    wuuut? This is crazy. My upgrades have cost me a couple of bucks. In the US, thanks to contracts, your first iPhone is your most expensive and each successive one should cost a few dollars. I bought a 3G with AT&T. Upgraded to 3GS for the subsidized upgrade price and sold my 3G for the upgrade price. I've repeated the process for the 4, 4S and 5, sometimes getting taxes paid for and sometimes not. Averaged out... I've paid less than $100 per iPhone. I may need to jump soon if I want to do the same for a 5S but I may wait for a 6 and take a hit on that as the value drops. Thanks to contracts and subsidized prices, there have been ample numbers of people waiting to buy off-contract, used, older gen iPhones.

    So, I don't understand what the problem is or why so many people hoard their old phones. But, thanks, guys! You are decreasing the supply and there's still plenty of demand so 'score' for me!
    Last edited by quidam_brujah; 02-14-2014 at 06:34 AM.

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    Green Apple Cardiac's Avatar
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    I've used mine a testers, loaned them to friends to use. I'm about to hand down a 4s to my daughter. Have a 5s, a friends 5, wife's 4s, 4, 3gs, 3, and even the old metal one 😆 all JB. The 4, and 3's aren't being used right now, you can still picked up and use them.

  12. #9
    iPhone? More like MyPhone
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    I presume you know you are still paying for all these phones through higher contract prices, no? Anyway, of course you make some $$ back selling them, that's how it should be!

  13. #10
    iPhoneaholic buggsy2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Akshay Masand View Post
    As to why Americans “hoard” old phones instead of selling or gifting
    'Murica: where there's $1000 worth of junk in the 3-car garage and $40,000 worth of car on the street.

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  15. #11
    Livin the iPhone Life bigboyz's Avatar
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    More stats that don't add up.

  16. #12
    Green Apple
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jato_BZ View Post
    I keep mine as testers...5S,5 & 2x4S's...3 out of 4 jailbroken...
    Could've made some money selling all of them, I can't think of a scenario in which you'd lose your jailbreak by accident (not counting on a friend pranking you and updating through iTunes by knowing your passcode...

  17. #13
    iPhone? More like MyPhone Eagleye's Avatar
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    I always sell my old one on ebay or craigslist to pay for the newest iPhone. I almost always get enough out of the old one to pay the AT&T subsidized price of a new one.

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