In this day and age, new gadgets become available all the time. For those of us who love them, it's hard to keep up and always buy the latest fancy doodad. Oh, and it's expensive, too.
If you are like me and have a gadget addiction, then your desk and shelves are overflowing with last year's "newest," "hottest" gizmos. Why not take those old, unused devices and transform them into cold, hard cash?
Meet Gazelle. Gazelle is a service that buys used phones, tablets, and a variety of Apple products, including iPhones and computers.
According to Market Wired, "To date, Gazelle has paid out more than $150 million and accepted more than 1.5 million trade-ins, helping consumers upgrade to the latest technology and earn quick cash."
How does it work?
It's pretty easy. You can break the process down into three basic steps: 1) Get an offer, 2) Ship your device, and 3) get paid.
Get an Offer
- Go to gazelle.com
- Search for your device and carrier, if it has one
- Click Get an Offer
- Estimate what condition your device in: broken, good, or flawless
- See how much they'll pay for your device
In my experience, the prices they offer are fair. You might be able to make more money if you were willing to find your own buyer, but the real question is whether the extra work will be worth it.
Ship Your Device
Gazelle pays for shipping and will even send you a box for free. Offers are good for 30 days and there's no obligation to you. If you change your mind, don't send your device.
- At the offer page, click Get Paid
- Create a Gazelle login account, if you don't have one
- Received a confirmation email and then your box
- Send the device
Once Gazelle receives your old device, they will verify its condition and make an adjustment to the offer based on what they find. That adjustment will go up, in some cases. If you like the new offer, do nothing and your money will be on the way.
Note: You can opt to get paid by gift card, if that works better for you.
My Experience Selling Stuff to Gazelle
I have had great experience with Gazelle. So far, I've sold them an old iPad and an old iPhone. In both cases, I got more than I expected. The company sent short, prompt email messages every step of the way. The most important thing, however, was that I got the money and the checks worked just like I expected.
My strategy has been to get an offer just before the release of a new device. For example, I got the offer on my iPhone 4 just before the iPhone 5s hit the market. Gazelle is clear that offer prices can change over time; a 2-year-old iPhone 4 usually won't be worth as much as a 6-month-old iPhone 4. But, because their offers are good for 30 days, if you play your cards right, you can maximize what you collect for a device right before a drop in value. With my simple strategy, my old devices helped pay for the new ones. Everyone wins.
See screenshots of email messages I received from Gazelle, below.
Can I Sell My Old Devices Elsewhere?
Yes. Often, cellular carriers and electronic store offer their own buy-back programs and translate funds into discounts on upgrades. Even Apple offers a recycling program that gives gift certificates for sending in old devices.
These programs are convenient, but in my experience they don't pay quite as much as Gazelle. To test this out, I just did a search for a 64 GB ATT iPhone 5s. I looked at both AT&T's program and Gazelle's. As of today's date, I can get $285 from AT&T or $300 from Gazelle. If my iPhone is unlocked, Gazelle will give me $350.
The next time a new gadget makes a debut, consider transforming old devices into possibilities that can help satisfy your new-device cravings.