Apple's latest iPhone and iPad trade-in changes are (mostly) good news
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iPhone 12 (left), iPhone 11 (right)
Compared to other device manufacturers (like Samsung, for instance), not to mention the top US wireless service providers, Apple doesn't exactly offer the greatest trade-in deals for buyers of brand spanking new iPhones, iPads, or iOS-only Watches.
But to its credit, the Cupertino-based tech giant has a habit of revising the trade-in discounts its US customers can get through the company's official retail channels once every few months or so, and more often than not, these changes are made to benefit buyers looking to rid themselves of older "iDevices."
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While the three members of 2019's iPhone 11 family are obviously not getting any younger, and the same goes for current and previous-gen iPad Pro, Air, and Mini models, the trade-in values of all these products (and a few more) have been enhanced from December 2020, when the last round of similar changes came into effect.
Here are the iPhone and iPad deals getting better and better
- iPhone 11 Pro Max - $515 maximum trade-in value (was $500)
- iPhone 11 Pro - $465 (was $450)
- iPhone 11 - $380 (was $360)
- iPhone 6s Plus - $75 (was $60)
- iPad Pro - $580 (was $525)
- iPad Air $275 (was $250)
- iPad mini $215 (up from $205)
No, none of these discounts have been drastically improved in the last four months or so. And yes, you still need to trade in a fully functional device, with an undamaged touchscreen and back glass, working buttons and cameras, as well as no visible dents or scratches on the body, to get the numbers listed above slashed off the regular price of a new iPhone or iPad or on a gift card that you can use at a later time.
Nonetheless, it's definitely great to see Apple raise the top trade-in discount available for both high-end iPhones and iPads while also thinking of much older and humbler models like the 6s Plus. Keep in mind that you can ditch many other (mint condition) "iDevices", including the iPhone X, XR, XS, 7, 7 Plus, first-gen SE, 6, and 6 Plus, and save a little bit of money on a new Apple Store purchase.
These trade-in deals are actually getting worse
- iPad - $235 (was $240)
- Apple Watch Series 4 - $135 (was $150)
- Apple Watch Series 3 - $85 (was $95)
Once again, the revisions are not dramatic, but if you've been hesitant until now to upgrade from the Apple Watch Series 3 to the Series 6, for instance, you have... one less reason to pull the trigger and one more to wait for the next edition of the world's best-selling smartwatch.
Meanwhile, the Apple Watch Series 5 can be traded in for up to $185, which isn't bad at all, especially if you're ready to give up that 2019-released model in favor of last year's low-cost SE version.
You can also trade in a bunch of Android devices (but you probably shouldn't)
Although Apple is mainly gearing its trade-in program towards owners of select Samsung Galaxy and Google Pixel handsets when it comes to Android devices, you can apparently get the company to hook you up with an iPhone discount in exchange for many other products from brands as diverse as BlackBerry, HTC, Huawei, LG, Nokia, Oppo, OnePlus, Sony, Vivo, or Xiaomi as well.
That being said, the trade-in values are really not very impressive, particularly if you compare them with what Verizon offers, for instance, for both fully working and broken smartphones. On top of everything, we've compiled a short list of Android devices that have declined in value in Apple's eyes since December 2020, in stark contrast with many of the company's iPhones and iPads released at around the same time:
- Samsung Galaxy S20 Plus - $305 (was $360)
- Galaxy S20 - $230 (down from $255)
- Galaxy S10 Plus - $250 (was $230)
- Galaxy Note 10 - $260 (was $285)
- Google Pixel 4 XL- $200 (was $260)
- Pixel 4 - $170 (was $215)
- Pixel 3 XL - $80 (was $100)
- Pixel 3 - $65 (was $80)