Apple is reportedly training employees for a new iPhone trade-in program which would allow shoppers to bring an old iPhone into an Apple store and trade it in for credit towards a new iPhone, a service which could be in place by the rumored iPhone 5S release date of September 20th.
Trading in an old iPhone is an easy way to pay for a new iPhone, or most of the cost of a new iPhone thanks to the fact that iPhones hold their value well. Many online iPhone trade-in companies let users trade an iPhone for cash, PayPal or Amazon credit and Best Buy runs numerous promotions offering a free iPhone 5 with trade-in of an old iPhone. Carriers like Verizon and others are also in the trade-in business offering discounts on new phones.
In June we first heard that Apple could partner with BrightStar to offer iPhone trade-ins at Apple Stores, and multiple sources claim the iPhone trade-in program could launch as soon as Next month.
MacRumors claims stores will soon begin training employees and materials explaining the program are headed to retail stores soon.
9to5Mac also claims formal training for the Apple iPhone trade-in program will start this week, adding that Apple Stores in Texas tested the program internally complete with boxes for Apple Stores to ship the used iPhone devices.
Neither publication offers a specific start date for Apple’s iPhone trade-in program, but if Apple is planning a launch in September odds are good it will come in time for the rumored iPhone 5S release date of September 20th.
An iPhone 5S launch event on September 10th is all but confirmed by Apple event invites, which may arrive on September 4th as rival Samsung introduces the Galaxy Note 3. Apple could use this big event to formally announce the iPhone trade-in program.
The best time to lock in an iPhone trade-in value is right now, as prices will drop 15-20% between now and the launch and iPhone 5S release date. Online trade-in services let users keep their old phone for up to 50 days, while Apple would likely require users to hand it in at the time of purchase. With this in mind, Apple would be smart to announce the program and trade-in price details before the iPhone 5S release date.
Multiple rumors point to an iPhone 5S release date of September 20th, which is when we also would expect an iPhone 5C to arrive as well. This timing makes sense based on Apple’s previous launches.