Why You Need to Sell That Old Phone

Cheryl Lock

old cell phonesI’ll admit it. I have a brand spanking new iPhone, and yet my old (still perfectly usable) phone is sitting, gathering dust, in my bedside drawer.

Turns out I’m not alone. According to a new survey, more than half of American consumers admit to having two or more unused cell phones in their homes. So how much would the combined trade-in value be if everyone up and sold their old gadgets?

A whopping $34 billion.

And old iPhones—the mack daddies of unused phone equipment—account for approximately one quarter of that sum. But there’s good reason for users to stop hoarding their old phones and turn them in instead. As technology analyst Jeff Kagan told MarketWatch, “if more iPhones flooded the market, the resale price would drop, and there would be less incentive for users to upgrade.”

In other words, the reason used iPhones are still so expensive to purchase is because so few people sell theirs back when they move on to the newest and latest version.

Nearly 20% of those surveyed said that the reason they didn’t sell back their old phones is simply because they’re “too lazy.” (For the record, Apple does have a recycling program in place.)

Another 20% were worried about releasing personal data along with their old phones, while 20% more said they didn’t realize they could make cash off their old phones.

Only 20% said they actually had recycled or sold an old iPhone in the past.

Tell us: Have you ever sold back or recycled an old phone?