Earlier iPhone models flood the market at diminishing prices

Online retailers of used gadgets are reporting a peak in mailed-in used iPhones after the iPhone 4 got introduced to the world. Gazelle.com and BuyMyTronics.com saw a surge in offers to buy used models. Gazelle currently offers $168 for a 32GB iPhone 3GS, which, just two months ago, nobody would think of selling to them for less than $300.

eBay is observing the same trends – 124% increase in listings of the older iPhone models between June 5 and June 28, and drop in prices asked. We just checked eBay, and there are offers for refurbished unlocked iPhone 3GS 32GB models for less than $400. On Craigslist we found similar offers. The same handsets went for more than $600 before the newest version came out, but now the iPhone 4 is the expensive kid on the block, with average selling price on eBay of $942.

Concerns about where all these used Apple gadgetry ends up if not sold to recuperate the cost of an upgrade, surfaced with environmentalists. Some recycling sites, they claim, ship containers with dumped electronics to developing countries to dispose of easily, and without the recycling restrictions of the West. Those concerns made Apple itself, along with Gazelle and BuyMyTronics, to confirm that all the stuff they get goes to gadget heaven domestically, regardless of the higher costs. Apple even reminded that you can bring an used company product in any of their stores, or mail it in for free to be recycled.

Regardless if you are selling your old iPhone to pay for the new one, or waited for prices to drop to get introduced to the Apple ecosystem, it still means enlarging their customer base. The prices above come to exhibit another consideration when choosing a smartphone – how good it is at keeping resale value in the longer term. The Apple iPhone has probably the best track record in that respect.

iPhone 4 Specifications | Review
iPhone 3GS Specifications | Review

source: SFGate
Loading Comments...
FCC OKs Cingular\'s purchase of AT&T Wireless