As cell phones have morphed into portable computers, the cost has gone up over the years. What was once a 'throw away' device has become as costly as a laptop computer in many cases. What's more, major changes are taking place in wireless plans, moving away from 'free' devices with long term contracts. As consumers face more significant out of pocket costs when acquiring mobile devices, cost will become more of a consideration. That brings me to this week's topic - five places to sell your used smartphone.
When you upgrade to a new device and end up with the last generation in decent condition, what are your options? Well, I was in this exact situation last week when I upgraded to the latest Galaxy Note smartphone. I had the earlier version of the Galaxy Note in pristine condition, but what should I do with it? Here is what I learned, and I can share with you my actual efforts to sell my Galaxy Note.
1. My Present Carrier - AT&T sent me an offer (without me even having to ask) but it was not very generous - $65 (max based on their final evaluation of the condition after they receive it). The mainstream carriers are even offering a trade value right at the counter when you are upgrading (yes, it is becoming very much like the car business).
2. Gazelle.com - $81
3. BuyMyTronics.com- $74
4. Usell.com- $85.20
5. eBay - $175
Ok, so even with a public school education I was able to easily conclude that eBay was the way to go here. Selling on eBay gives me the ability to get the retail value of the device. The other sites are clearly trying to buy at a wholesale level to be able to turn around and sell for double what they paid.
The only downside of selling your device on eBay is that you are now in the retail business. The buyer can dispute the quality of the item and leave you in limbo in a PayPal dispute for several weeks. You also have to set up an eBay account and link it to a PayPal account (so there is some amount of work involved here, unless you are already set up with an eBay account which was the case with me).
One Last Thing! And This Is Important
Depending on the compatibility between your current phone and the new one you are buying, you may be able to backup everything to your desktop computer and then restore all of your data to your new phone. I was able to do this with my upgrade from one Galaxy Note to another. This would obviously also work with iPhones as well. Now, the most important thing. After you have backed up your data, reset your phone to the original factory settings. This will be done differently with each device, but it is easy to find out how by doing a simple Google search. A factory reset will delete all of your data. If you have added a data card be sure and remove that as well. The goal here is to prevent the new buyer from having access to your personal information (contacts, any saved credit card numbers, passwords, etc...).
I am very interested in getting your feedback on this one. Have you sold a smartphone? Share with our readers your own ideas and strategies.
Helping you make the most of God’s money!