Trade in your old iPhone for the latest model, under new Apple scheme

Apple announces trade-in programme, and plans to sell refurbished phones in emerging markets

Apple fans will soon be able to trade in their older iPhone models in exchange for money off the iPhone 5 (or the iPhone 5S or 6 if and when such a product launches), according to Bloomberg and a number of anonymous insider Apple sources.

The trade-in scheme will be run by a mobile firm called Brightstar, which already operates similar programmes for carriers in the US, and is intended to encourage the significant number of upgrade hold-outs still using an iPhone 3GS or 4 to take a step up.

Selling refurbished iPhones in emerging markets

Another side of this, however, is Apple's increasing interest in new markets around the world. We recently reported on Apple's recent success in the Indian market, where its iPhones sales more than quadrupled since the start of the year; but the most popular models there were older and less feature-rich models, brought within reach of the expanding Indian middle class by careful discounting and monthly payment schemes.

Selling three or even four generations of iPhone at the same time makes a lot of sense for Apple, since its target markets around the world (and emergent markets like India will be increasingly important over the next few years) are looking for different things. But actually building those various models at the same time is a logistical burden, slowing its factories and reducing the efficiency of Apple's supply chain.

Far better (and greener) to make use of the existing iPhones no longer wanted by customers in the West, refurbish them and resell them at a discount. Even if Apple's per-unit profit is lower in this scenario, it's able to tempt new smartphone users into the iOS ecosystem, giving it a foothold in these growing tech markets where budget options are always a more tempting option.

A concept illustration of a budget iPhone, a rumoured project that would allow Apple to target emerging markets more effectively

Budget iPhone

On a related note, unconfirmed rumours suggest that Apple may be considering launching a budget iPhone specifically for markets such as India, Brazil and China. One theory is that an iPhone 6 will launch at the same time as an iPhone 5S, which will be built from cheaper materials and offer fewer features.

Join the PC World newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags Appleconsumer electronicssmartphoneshardware systemsiPhonetabletsBloombergiPad

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

David Price

Macworld U.K.
Show Comments

Essentials

Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop

Learn more >

Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive

Learn more >

Mobile

Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive 

Learn more >

Exec

Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones

Learn more >

Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards 

Learn more >

Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive 

Learn more >

HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450

Learn more >

Budget

Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga 910

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?