Turn your old cell phones and electronic devices into cash


Want fast cash? A recent study by MCE Systems found that 66% of cellphone owners leave between $50 billion and $60 billion worth of old phones in their drawers.

“Every household in the United States has more than four phones in their drawers,” said Robert Hackl, president of MCE Systems, a mobile device intelligence platform.


You can turn them into quick cash or gift cards.

On average, says Hackle, “Each of these phones is $140.”

The MCE Systems study found that 66% of people who bought a new phone didn’t trade in their old one.

“Older-version phones can cost between $50 and newer ones cost around $300,” said Patricia Maddux of Experimax, which buys, sells and repairs computers, tablets and phones in Houston.

But how old is too old?

“The iPhone 6 for example, because you can’t put updates on those phones anymore,” Maddux said.


While older technologies, such as flip phones, can fetch pennies on the dollar, some first-generation iPhones, like the iPhone 2G, Nokia 3310, and Ericsson T28, cost between $50 and $1,000. on eBay.

What about laptops, computers and tablets?

“For something that goes from 2014 to 2019, you’re looking at anywhere from $100 to sometimes $600,” Maddux said.

Most major cell phone companies offer trade-in credits when you buy a new phone, including Verizon, AT&T, Sprint, and T-Mobile.

You can also sell to online buyers, such as BuyBackWorld, Gazelle, and Smartphone Recycling. Amazon and eBay offer electronics take-back programs. All of these items come with free shipping.

Or step into local shoppers, like Experimax, GameStop for gaming tech, and cellphone stores.

“We did a lot of mystery shopping and oddly enough, you go to a store, you get the best price,” Hackl said.


Store staff can also help you clean your device so that your personal information doesn’t fall into someone else’s hands.

“Some people aren’t quite sure what to do. So when they come here, we want to make sure all their information is wiped off the phone,” Maddux said.

To erase a phone, first back up your data, including your contacts. Then go to Settings, click General, then click Reset and Erase all content and settings.

You can also encrypt the data on your phone by going to Settings, Security, Encryption & Credentials, then tap encrypt phone.

You can also remove the SIM card.


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