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Why now may be the best time to trade in your old iPhone

But only if you want another iPhone.
Written by Don Reisinger, Contributing Writer
Apple iPhone 15 Pro homescreen with Nomad case and wallpaper.
Max Buondonno/ZDNET

If you have an old iPhone lying around that you want to get a few more bucks out of, now's the time to do it.

Starting on Monday, Apple stores across the US and Canada, as well as Apple's online store, will offer higher trade-in values on old iPhones, Apple has confirmed on its website. However, there's one catch: in order to qualify for the higher trade value, customers will need to use their trade credit on a new iPhone 15 Pro, Plus, or Max. Apple said on its website on Monday that the deal will last until June 3. Bloomberg's Mark Gurman earlier reported on the move.

Also: The 3 Apple products you shouldn't buy this month (including this iPad)

"Get extra trade-in credit when you trade in an eligible iPhone and purchase a new eligible Apple device through June 3, 2024," Apple wrote on its website. "Additional terms from Apple or Apple's trade-in partners may apply."

Since Apple didn't share additional details on its website, there are still plenty of questions to answer. For one, it's unclear by how much Apple stores will increase iPhone trade-in values. It's also unclear if Apple will increase trade-in values on all devices, regardless of condition, or if it instead plans to only offer the boosts on those that are in good working condition. Apple also didn't say how much discretion Apple store employees may have in determining the increase and whether there's a range in how much iPhone trade-in values will be boosted.

Even so, it's nice to see Apple offering more for iPhone trades. The company has been aggressive for years on getting iPhone customers to upgrade their handsets as often as possible, but considering how expensive new iPhones can be, not everyone is so keen on getting a new handset every couple of years. By having the ability to trade in older smartphones, those who wouldn't otherwise upgrade their devices can defray the cost of a new iPhone.

Also: The best phones to buy in 2024

Apple is taking some of the guesswork out of determining how much an old iPhone is worth. The company's online trade-in tool gives customers a sense of what Apple will pay for used iPhones, with the iPhone 7 Plus going for as much as $60 and the iPhone 14 Pro Max fetching as much as $650. But those figures are subject to the specific model and its condition.

Whatever the case, if you're planning to take advantage of Apple's offer, don't just head to the store without taking some precautions. First things first, ensure you back up your data and wipe the iPhone clean before handing it over to Apple to safeguard your data and privacy.

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