Who Buys iPhones? The Definitive Guide to Selling Your Used iPhone

Don’t you just hate having old iPhones lying around? It would be cool if you could get rid of them. But you don’t want to throw them in the garbage with all those rare metals in them. Getting cash for them would be better, but who buys iPhones?

Get this.

There are a dozen places where you can sell your old iPhone. They’ll even buy a broken iPhone! Best of all, you don’t need to try and market your old iPhone yourself like you would on eBay. These resellers want your phone and will offer money.

What to Look for in a Buyer

Of course, every company is unique, and some are better than others. That’s why you need to look at a few criteria when choosing someone to buy your iPhone.

We put together a list of criteria that we used to review each of the used iPhone buyers on our list. First, we went to each company’s website and got a quote for an iPhone XS. This is still a good phone, but starting to be left behind by newer models.

Let’s take a closer look.

1. Top dollar

For starters, you want cash. Also, you want the most cash you can get for your old iPhone.

Some buyers aren’t willing to offer you the same money that others are, so right away you can scratch those guys off your list. When reviewing iPhone resellers, we looked at how much cash they were offering for our imaginary iPhone XS.

2. Trustworthiness

Next, can you trust the buyer? After all, there are a lot of scams out there, and you’re dealing with people on the internet who you’ll never see. That’s not to say everyone is a scam. In fact, many of the iPhone buyers you’ll find online are legitimate businesses.

But there is still some risk. That’s why we’ve worked to put together a list of trustworthy buyers, so that no matter who you choose, you’ll be safe.

3. Ethics

Hand-in-hand with trustworthiness is ethics. In today’s world you want to know that you’re supporting businesses who care about more than making themselves rich. Businesses should be active and productive members of society. We’ll look at how each place you can sell your iPhone instantly is when it comes to their contributions to the world.

4. Ease and speed

Finally, how easy is it for you to get cash for your iPhone?

Each company we reviewed offers different ways to get your phone to them and different payment methods. Some are faster and easier to use, than others. That’s an important criteria to look at.

Who Buys iPhones?

Believe it or not, but you can sell your iPhone instantly with several companies. Thankfully, we’ve made it easier for you to get cash for your iPhone by doing the research for you.

Let’s dive right in!

Infographic with a list of who buys iphones in the US with trade in prices

Online Trade-In Sites

Did you know you have options when selling your used iPhone? You don’t need to leave the comfort of your home if you don’t want, because there are plenty of online options. Most of them will send you a free shipping kit, and your old iPhone will get to enjoy a new life.

Gizmogrind – $506

That’s us! So far, we offer you the most money for your phone of all the used iPhone buyers we reviewed. When we input a like-new iPhone XS Max with 64 GB (unlocked), GizmoGrind offers $506. Best of all, GizmoGrind makes it ridiculously easy for you to get paid.

And you know what else? For every phone GizmoGrind buys, we’ll help plant a tree through OneTreePlanted.org. How’s that for using business as a force for good?

Payment methods: Zelle Pay, PayPal, or Apple gift card

Procedure: Get a quote through the site. Simply follow the prompts as the site guides you through the process. Once you’ve entered all the information about your phone, you’ll receive a quote. If you’re happy, Gizmogrind will email a shipping label. Send your phone in and you’ll receive your payment within days!

Pros

  • It’s fast – you’ll have your money within days
  • Data security – Advanced forensic data wipe and strict policies to protect your data
  • Get cash, not store credit

Cons

  • No physical store (which allows us to give you more cash)
  • Online-only

Orchard – $450

Next up we got a quote for our imaginary iPhone XS from Orchard. They offered $450. Not bad! That’s a decent amount of cash compared to Gizmogrind.

Then in order to get paid you need to wait up to four weeks. To top it all off, we couldn’t find any community involvement on the part of the company.

Payment methods: PayPal, Amazon gift card, cheque

Procedure: They don’t offer a speedy and easy delivery service. You need to download a third-party app onto your iPhone and use that to arrange a pick-up. They’ll send you the shipping kit, but the entire process is a bit of a headache.

Then in order to get paid you need to wait up to four weeks. To top it all off, we couldn’t find any community involvement on the part of the company.

Pros

  • Established, trustworthy company
  • Decent offers

Cons

  • Lengthy process from downloading an app to getting your money
  • Limited payment methods
  • No social involvement

SellCell – $325

Third, on our list is SellCell. This US-based corporation has been in business for some time and they have a “best price guarantee.” But there is a catch. SellCell uses a search engine to find other iPhone buyers for you. You won’t get an actual quote direct from SellCell. Instead, you’ll get a dozen quotes from different companies, some of whom we’ve never heard of.

Remember that whole “trustworthiness” criteria we had?

Payment methods: varies from buyer to buyer, but most use PayPal or cheque.

Procedure: Enter your phone’s details, and the site will surface a dozen quotes from different buyers. You then need to go through each buyer and find the one that you want to sell your phone to.

Each buyer has a different process for shipping your phone. Some send you a shipping kit, and others expect you to pay to ship the phone to them.

Pros

  • A large selection of potential buyers in one place

Cons

  • Not the highest offer despite a guarantee
  • Unknown buyers (can you trust them?)
  • Lengthy and confusing payment process
  • No social responsibility

usell – $385

Fourth on our list is usell. These guys are fairly small and new to the scene. They only offered $365 for our imaginary iPhone XS, but they do offer a couple of different ways to get paid, including PayPal and check.

Payment methods: Paypal, cheque

Procedure: Like Gizmogrind, they’ll send you a free shipping kit. It’s hassle-free and doesn’t cost you anything to sell your old iPhone. And they’ll pay you within one to two business days!

Finally, we couldn’t find any information about any involvement with the community in the same way that Gizmogrind is involved.

Pros

  • Fast and hassle-free
  • Cash instead of store credit

Cons

  • No social responsibility
  • Lower quotes

Swappa – $375

Next up is one of the big boys on the block. We’re talking about Swappa. Now it’s important to understand that Swappa won’t buy your iPhone. Instead, the platform will attempt to connect you with a prospective buyer. In this way, buyers and sellers can “swap.”

We received a quote of $335 for our trusty (and totally fake) iPhone XS.

Payment methods: PayPal

Procedure: If you use Swappa, then your listing is competing with hundreds of other people selling their phones and buyers looking for the lowest price. In addition, there’s no guarantee that a buyer will be interested. Once a buyer is interested, you and they need to negotiate the terms of the sale.

Pros

  • Large pool of potential buyers

Cons

  • Lots of competition with other sellers
  • Lowest price tends to win
  • Long process
  • No guarantee you’ll sell your phone

Gazelle – $275

Have you heard of Gazelle? They’ve been in the game for some time and have a reputation for reliability. But they offered the lowest amount for our iPhone XS. They quoted us a measly $255!

Payment methods: PayPal, Amazon gift card, cheque

Procedure: Once you accept their quote. they will send you a free shipping kit, and they offer multiple ways to get paid. That said, we couldn’t find any information that they’re helping out anywhere. As we said, we want to see companies who are a force for good in the world and their communities.

Pros

  • Gazelle Rewards (earn points on every dollar)
  • Easily buy a used phone from their site

Cons

  • Very low offers
  • No social responsibility
  • Confusing, dated website

BuyBack Boss – $386

Next, we looked at BuyBack Boss. The company has a slick website, and they offered a “highest price guarantee.” But when we input our iPhone XS for a quote, they only offered $386.

Payment methods: PayPal, cheque

Procedure: Like most of the used iPhone buyers we looked at, these guys will send you a free shipping kit. Once they’ve received your phone they’ll pay you out via PayPal or check.

BuyBackBoss gives you the option of donating your payment to Lighthouse for Hope, which helps families dealing with pediatric cancer.

Pros

  • BBB accredited
  • Supports an important charity

Cons

  • Lower offers than others
  • Payments take a little longer to get processed

Decluttr – $345

Eighth on our list is Decluttr. Don’t worry, that’s how they spell their name. They buy a lot of stuff, including LEGO (which we thought was kinda cool), but they don’t offer much. They wanted to buy our used iPhone XS for only $345.

Payment methods: PayPal, donate to charity

Procedure: You’ll need to supply your own box. They’ll email you a shipping label that you can slap onto that box, so the shipping is free. And once they receive your iPhone they’ll pay you the next day.

Pros

  • They’ll buy a wide variety of items
  • Socially responsible

Cons

  • Limited payment methods
  • Low offers
  • No shipping kit

Apple Trade-In – $370 (in-store credit)

Finally, we looked at Apple’s own trade-in program. We realize it’s not the same as getting cash for your iPhone, but there are some benefits. For starters, Apple will offer you credit towards the purchase of a new iPhone. In the case of our imaginary iPhone XS, Apple offered $370 in credit.

Payment methods: In-store credit only

Procedure: Naturally, Apple gives you several options. You can bring your iPhone into any Apple Store for instant credit, or they’ll mail you a free shipping kit. Because it’s Apple, you know that they’re going to help the environment. Just check out Liam the Robot and how he keeps rare minerals out of landfills!

Pros

  • Completely trustworthy (it’s Apple, after all)
  • Socially responsible

Cons

  • Low offer
  • In-store credit only
  • Limited availability
  • Longer turnaround times

That said if you want cold hard cash quickly, and you want to help the environment, Gizmogrind is still your best bet.

In-Store Trade-Ins

Looking for cold hard cash for your iPhone in your hand today? Then walking into a store is your best bet. Several retailers have trade-in programs that might benefit you.

Best Buy – $270 store credit

You know Best Buy. Not only can you find a store everywhere in North America, but they’ve been in the business for a long time. That means they can offer things others can’t, like steep discounts on new phones when you trade-in your old device.

Payment methods: in-store credit towards a new device only

Procedure: Get a quote from their website, then take the quote and your phone into the store. They’ll hook you up with a steep discount on a new phone.

Pros

  • Trustworthy
  • Stores are everywhere

Cons

  • Low offers
  • In-store credit can only be applied towards activating a new device
  • You’ll need to leave home

Carrier (Verizon, T-Mobile, etc) – $240 +/-

By now you’re probably aware that most carriers accept trade-ins. Like Best Buy, they’ll apply the value of the trade-in towards a new device. We shopped around and most of them offered $240 – $245 for our imaginary iPhone XS.

Payment methods: in-store credit only

Procedure: Some of the carriers offered online trade-ins. T-Mobile, for instance, will send you a free shipping kit. All of them have one prerequisite for trade-ins, however. You need to sign up for a new phone with them, with the balance of your trade-in getting applied to the price of the new phone.

Pros

  • If you’re shopping for a new phone anyways, you can save a bit of cash

Cons

  • No cash
  • Low trade-in value
  • Limited options

Pawn shops – $200 +/-

If you’re set on walking into a store today and leaving with cold hard cash in your hands (not store credit), then a pawn shop might be in order. These guys buy most stuff for cash, and resell it for a profit. But how much you’ll receive varies from place to place.

One thing is certain: you won’t get much for your high-value phone.

Payment methods: Cash

Procedure: Bring your phone and a piece of ID and walk out with dollars in your pocket.

Pros

  • Super simple
  • Instant payment

Cons

  • Lowball offers
  • You often have to negotiate aggressively
  • Some stores can be shady…

Get Cash for your iPhone, Fast

So, what’s the answer? It’s actually simple.

Looking for a same day payout but willing to accept store credit and a lower offer, Apple, or network trade-ins are for you.

If you’re you want cold hard cash and the highest offer of any trade-in service but your willing to wait for 3 to 4 days, go with online trade-in sites like us.

If you’re ok with meeting strangers negotiating with buyers and comfortable with listing your device yourself, go with classifieds or eBay. You’ll get slightly more than we can offer

Gizmogrind offered the most money. They also had the easiest free shipping and offered many different ways to get paid. Also, they practice social responsibility by planting a tree for every iPhone they buy. Finally, Gizmogrind offers a simple, no-nonsense way to sell your used iPhone.

Why not get started now and get the best price?

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